1. Enjoin has meanings connected with commanding and issuing instructions, and is typically used in three constructions: (1) you enjoin a person to do something, (2) you enjoin something on a person, and (3) you enjoin that something should happen. Fowler (1926) wrote that the first of these ‘is not recommended’, but his reasons were not convincing even then and this construction is now too common and useful to be objected to:

• The church had enjoined the faithful to say an Ave Maria —Barry Unsworth, 1985

• I was particularly enjoined to keep away from the dogs, and never to give any of them my hands —Liverpool Daily Post, 2003

• He not only enjoins us to eat bread,…but he asks that we ‘empathise’ with the yeast as it goes about its leavening work —Sunday Times, 2006.

2. In an almost opposite meaning, in use in legal language since the 16c, enjoin means ‘to prohibit or forbid’ (an action); in this meaning it can refer to a person or thing, and is typically followed by from:

• The Al-Fayed brothers…sought to enjoin the Observer from publishing the results of its continuing enquiries —Observer, 1986

• Metropolitan Life…has filed a suit to enjoin the takeover —Times, 1988.

Modern English usage. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • enjoin — en·join /in jȯin/ vt [Anglo French enjoindre to impose, constrain, from Old French, from Latin injungere to attach, impose, from in on + jungere to join]: to prohibit by judicial order: issue an injunction against a three judge district court… …   Law dictionary

  • Enjoin — En*join , v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Enjoined}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Enjoining}.] [F. enjoindre, L. injungere to join into, charge, enjoin; in + jungere to join. See {Join}, and cf. {Injunction}.] 1. To lay upon, as an order or command; to give an… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • enjoin — [v1] order, command adjure, admonish, advise, appoint, bid, call upon, caution, charge, counsel, decree, demand, dictate, direct, forewarn, impose, instruct, ordain, prescribe, require, rule, tell, urge, warn; concepts 53,78 enjoin [v2] forbid… …   New thesaurus

  • enjoin — ► VERB 1) instruct or urge to do. 2) (enjoin from) Law prohibit (someone) from performing (an action) by an injunction. ORIGIN Old French enjoindre, from Latin injungere join, attach, impose …   English terms dictionary

  • enjoin — [en join′, injoin′] vt. [ME enjoinen < OFr enjoindre < L injungere, to join into, put upon < in , in + jungere, JOIN] 1. to urge or impose with authority; order; enforce [to enjoin silence on a class] 2. to prohibit, esp. by legal… …   English World dictionary

  • Enjoin — En*join , v. t. To join or unite. [Obs.] Hooker. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • enjoin — early 13c., engoinen, from stem of O.Fr. enjoindre (12c.) impose (on), inflict; subject to; assign (to), from L. injungere to join, fasten, attach; figuratively to inflict, to attack, impose, from in on (see IN (Cf. in ) (2)) + jungere to join… …   Etymology dictionary

  • enjoin — 1 direct, order, *command, bid, instruct, charge Analogous words: advise, counsel (see under ADVICE): admonish (see REPROVE): *warn, forewarn, caution 2 interdict, prohibit, *forbid, inhibit, ban Analogous words: debar, shut out, ru …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • enjoin — v. (formal) 1) (esp. AE) (d; tr.) ( to forbid ) to enjoin from 2) (d; tr.) ( to order ) to enjoin on (to enjoin a duty on smb.) 3) (H) ( to order ) to enjoin smb. to obey the law * * * [ɪn dʒɔɪn] (H) ( to order ) to enjoin smb. to obey the law… …   Combinatory dictionary

  • enjoin — UK [ɪnˈdʒɔɪn] / US verb [transitive] Word forms enjoin : present tense I/you/we/they enjoin he/she/it enjoins present participle enjoining past tense enjoined past participle enjoined enjoin someone from something enjoin someone to do something …   English dictionary

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