• WordNet 3.6
    • v encumber hold back
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Encumber To impede the motion or action of, as with a burden; to retard with something superfluous; to weigh down; to obstruct or embarrass; as, his movements were encumbered by his mantle; his mind is encumbered with useless learning. "Not encumbered with any notable inconvenience."
    • Encumber To load with debts, or other legal claims; as, to encumber an estate with mortgages.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • encumber To clog or impede with a load, burden, or other hindrance; render difficult or laborious in motion or operation; embarrass; overload; perplex; obstruct.
    • encumber Specifically To place (property) under a charge or servitude; load with debt or liability: as, to encumber an estate with mortgages, or with a widow's dower; an encumbered title. See encumbrance, 3. Synonyms To oppress, overload, hinder, entangle, handicap, weigh down.
    • n encumber An encumbrance; a hindrance.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Encumber en-kum′bėr to impede the motion of: to hamper: to embarrass: to burden: to load with debts
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  • Robert Collier
    “It is your work to clear away the mass of encumbering material of thoughts, so that you may bring into plain view the precious thing at the center of the mass.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. encombrer,; pref. en-,L. in,) + OF. combrer, to hinder. See Cumber, and cf. Incumber
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. encombrer, from en-, and combrer.


In literature:

Deep down he sank, and the waters darkened over his head, for he was encumbered by the weight of his clothes.
"Stories from the Odyssey" by H. L. Havell
He had climbed to another limb with infinite difficulty, because of the encumbering bag of rocks on his back.
"The Boy Inventors' Radio Telephone" by Richard Bonner
On the second morning we stopped at Tulemsk to deliver several boxes that encumbered the sleighs.
"Overland through Asia; Pictures of Siberian, Chinese, and Tartar Life" by Thomas Wallace Knox
Some of it was rough-hewn in the rock, and encumbered by roots of trees.
"Lady Merton, Colonist" by Mrs. Humphry Ward
For no one Is born without vices: he is the best man who is encumbered with the least.
"The Works of Horace" by Horace
The boat was much encumbered with baggage, and seven horses were on board.
"Life & Times of Col. Daniel Boone" by Cecil B. Hartley
I have no wish to encumber you with useless instructions.
"54-40 or Fight" by Emerson Hough
Christianity has made no change in this, for it, too, is encumbered with such fears.
"White Shadows in the South Seas" by Frederick O'Brien
Vases in daily use were of slighter make and less encumbered with inconvenient ornaments.
"Manual Of Egyptian Archaeology And Guide To The Study Of Antiquities In Egypt" by Gaston Camille Charles Maspero
What are these weights my feet encumber?
"Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece, Second Series" by John Addington Symonds

In poetry:

With your locks that encumber, or scatter
In a thousand mercurial gleams,
And those feet whose impetuous patter
I hear and remember in dreams;
"To My Daughter" by Archibald Lampman
Round and round the house they go,
Weaving slow
Magic circles to encumber
And imprison in their ring
Olaf the King,
As he helpless lies in slumber.
"Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga of King Olaf V. -- The Skerry Of Shri" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The rose had been washed, just washed in a shower
Which Mary to Anna conveyed;
The plentiful moisture encumbered the flower,
And weighed down its beautiful head.
"The Rose" by William Cowper
Onward still the squadrons thunder--
Knightly hearts were their's and brave,
Men and horses without number
All the furrowed ground encumber--
Falling fast to their last slumber--
Bloody slumber! bloody grave!
"The Charge At Balaklava" by James Barron Hope
Ah, weary ones! Too long, too long our limbs
Have wandered o'er the terrene globe,
So that to us it seems
As if the shrewd wild beast,
With false and flattering hopes,
Our bosoms has encumbered with her wiles.
"The Heroic Enthusiasts - Part The Second =Fifth Dialogue=." by Giordano Bruno
And the road was choked and encumbered with the dead;
And, unable to stand the charge, the French instantly fled,
And Napoleon's army of yesterday was now a total wreck,
Which the British manfully for ten long hours held in check.
"The Battle of Waterloo" by William Topaz McGonagall

In news:

Judgments – Judgment Lien – Conveyance Of Encumbered Property.
The intoxicated on power incumbents encumber diplomatic solutions.
Charlotte County has reinstated the Lien Relief Program, which is open to all owners of residential real property encumbered with code enforcement liens in unincorporated Charlotte County.

In science:

There are no solid grounds to believe that intergalactic space is permeated by magnetic fields strong enough to encumber the straight voyage of an energetic charged particle. A relativistic particle could reach us from the confines of the visible Universe.
Avatars of a Matter-Antimatter Universe
As such, it is encumbent upon us to develop theories of these sub jects by studying all sources from the solar corona to GRBs so as to derive empirical laws which we can then try to relate to numerical simulation.
The Phenomena of High Energy Astrophysics
We use rationalized Gaussian units throughout, since this encumbers the formulae with a minimum number of factors for units and numerical factors.
Free energies in the presence of electric and magnetic fields
It is encumbant upon us to characterize this phase in great detail and to explore the likely far-reaching implications for the evolution of matter during the first second of the universe.
Future Experiments in Relativistic Heavy Ion Collisions
There is perhaps no other field of physics encumbered by so many misconceptions and misinterpretations as quantum theory is.
Uncertainty relations on the slit and Fisher information