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hem in

Meaning: to restrict someone's movement, or to limit someone's freedom

Synonym: constrain (formal)

For example:

  • hem sb in Ronaldo was hemmed in by defenders, so he couldn't get a shot on goal.

  • be hemmed in by sth Louis had always felt hemmed in by social conventions and the pressure to conform.

Quick Quiz:

When they reached Government House, the protesters were hemmed in by
  1. bad weather
  2. rows of police
  3. anti-government speeches

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