Meaning of CONTROL in English

I. con ‧ trol 1 S1 W1 /kənˈtrəʊl $ -ˈtroʊl/ BrE AmE noun

[ Word Family: adjective : controlling, ↑ controllable ≠ ↑ uncontrollable , ↑ controlled ≠ ↑ uncontrolled ; noun : ↑ control , ↑ controller ; verb : ↑ control ; adverb : uncontrollably]

1 . MAKE SOMEBODY/SOMETHING DO WHAT YOU WANT [uncountable] the ability or power to make someone or something do what you want or make something happen in the way you want:

The disease robs you of muscle control.

control of/over

Babies are born with very little control over their movements.

Artists like to have some control over where their works are hung in a gallery.

She’s a good teacher who has control of her class.

Students are encouraged to take control of their own learning, rather than just depending on the teacher.

Excessive drinking can make you lose control of your own life.

‘Do you need any help?’ ‘No. It’s under control, thanks.’

Dogs are allowed on the trails if they are kept under control.

The car spun out of control and hit a tree.

Flight delays do occur, for reasons that are outside our control.

2 . POWER [uncountable] the power to make the decisions about how a country, place, company etc is organized or what it does:

The press was freed from political control.

control of

Jordan asked for editorial control of the project.

in control (of something)

Anti-government forces are still in control of the area.

By the end of the year, the rebels had control over the northern territories.

The Johnson family has effective control of the company, owning almost 60% of the shares.

China gained control of the island in 1683.

His son is being trained to take control of the family business.

The Democrats lost control of Congress in the last election.

under the control of somebody

The college was under the control of a group of trustees.

The whole of this area came under Soviet control after World War II.

The Conservatives are hoping to regain control of the city council.

3 . WAY OF LIMITING SOMETHING [uncountable and countable] an action, method, or law that limits the amount or growth of something, especially something that is dangerous:

pest control

control of

the control of inflation

control on

The authorities imposed strict controls on the movement of cattle.

an agreement on arms control (=control of the amount of weapons a country has)

under control

Firefighters had the blaze under control by 9:44 p.m.

Shea used diet and exercise to bring her weight under control.

The Federal Reserve Bank raised interest rates to keep inflation under control.

rent/price/wage etc controls

Rent controls ensured that no one paid too much for housing.

tight/rigid controls (=strict controls)

the introduction of tighter controls on immigration

Police used fire hoses and dogs for crowd control.

4 . ABILITY TO STAY CALM [uncountable] the ability to remain calm even when you feel very angry, upset, or excited:

There were sudden tears in his eyes and he paused, fighting for control.

Davidson lost control of himself and started yelling.

Small children can’t be expected to have the same self-control (=ability to control their emotions and behaviour) as an adult.

under control

Her voice is under control, but she is almost shaking with anger.

in control

I felt calm and in control.

5 . MACHINE/VEHICLE [countable] the thing that you press or turn to make a machine, vehicle, television etc work:

the TV remote control

the volume control on the radio

a car with manual controls

at the controls (=controlling a vehicle or aircraft)

Belton, at the controls, made a perfect landing.

6 . PEOPLE WHO ORGANIZE AN ACTIVITY [singular, uncountable] the people who direct an activity or who check that something is done correctly, the place where this is done, or the process of doing it:

air-traffic control

Please stop at passport control.

computers used for stock control

7 . SCIENTIFIC TEST [countable]

a) a person, group etc against which you compare another person or group that is very similar, in order to see if a particular quality is caused by something or happens by chance

control group/population/sample etc

A control group of non-smoking women was compared to four groups of women smokers.

b) a thing that you already know the result for that is used in a scientific test, in order to show that your method is working correctly ⇨ ↑ controlled experiment

8 . COMPUTER [singular] ( also control key ) a particular button on a computer that allows you to do certain operations:

Press control and F2 to exit.

⇨ ↑ birth control , ↑ quality control , ↑ remote control

II. control 2 S2 W1 BrE AmE verb ( past tense and past participle controlled , present participle controlling ) [transitive]

[ Word Family: adjective : controlling, ↑ controllable ≠ ↑ uncontrollable , ↑ controlled ≠ ↑ uncontrolled ; noun : ↑ control , ↑ controller ; verb : ↑ control ; adverb : uncontrollably]

[ Date: 1400-1500 ; Language: Anglo-French ; Origin: contreroller 'to keep a copy of an official document in rolled-up form' , from Medieval Latin contrarotulare , from contrarotulus 'copy of a roll' , from Latin contra- ( ⇨ ↑ contra- ) + rotulus 'roll' ]

1 . POWER to have the power to make the decisions about how a country, place, company etc is organized or what it does:

The Democrats continued to control the Senate until last year.

a huge company controlling half the world’s coffee trade

Labour-/Republican-/Democrat- etc controlled

2 . LIMIT to limit the amount or growth of something, especially something that is dangerous:

a chemical used to control weeds

an economic plan to control inflation

Development in areas of outstanding natural beauty is strictly controlled.

Strict measures were taken to control the spread of foot and mouth disease.

3 . MAKE SOMEBODY/SOMETHING DO WHAT YOU WANT to make someone or something do what you want, or make something happen in the way that you want:

Police had to be called in to control the crowds.

a skilled rider controlling a spirited horse

4 . EMOTION if you control your emotions, your voice, your expression etc, you succeed in behaving calmly and sensibly, even though you feel angry, upset, or excited:

Sarah took a deep breath, trying to control her anger.

He controlled the urge to laugh.

control yourself

Newman controlled himself with an effort.

5 . MACHINE/PROCESS/SYSTEM to make a machine, process, or system work in a particular way:

a radio-controlled toy car

A thermostat controls the temperature in the building.

control how/what/which etc

The valves in the heart control how quickly the blood is pumped around the body.

6 . CHECK SOMETHING to make sure that something is done correctly SYN check , monitor :

The company strictly controls the quality of its products.

• • •


▪ control to have power over a country, place, company etc, and decide what happens there:

The Democrats controlled the US Congress.


Government forces now control the city.

▪ run to make the important everyday decisions concerning a company, organization, country etc, so that it can continue to operate:

He runs a software company in New York.


The parents want to run the school themselves.


The government is unfit to run the country.


The charity runs a medical clinic in one of the poorest parts of the city.

▪ be in charge of somebody/something to have control over something, or responsibility for a group of people:

She is in charge of training new employees.


I left him in charge of the children while I was out.

▪ manage to be in charge of a company, especially one that someone else owns:

In 1963, she opened a furniture store, and her son has managed it since 1985.

▪ be in power if a group or leader is in power, they have political control of a country:

Abe resigned after less than a year in power.


It was the first time a democratically elected government had been in power.

▪ rule if a leader or political group rules a country, they have political control of that country:

President Assad ruled the country for almost 30 years.


The same party has ruled Japan for many years.

▪ supervise to be in charge of a group of workers or students and make sure that they do their work properly:

Professor Braude supervised the research team.


He’s supervising the building work.

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.