[kurb] /kɜrb/

noun, verb (used with object), British.
(defs 1, 15).
something that restrains or holds back
any enclosing framework, such as a wall of stones around the top of a well

a hard swelling on the hock of a horse
verb (transitive)
to control with or as if with a curb; restrain
(vet science) a swelling on the leg of a horse, below the point of the hock, usually caused by a sprain
a line of stone or concrete forming an edge between a pavement and a roadway, so that the pavement is some 15 cm above the level of the road
(transitive) to provide with or enclose with a kerb

1660s, a variant of curb (q.v.). The preferred British English spelling in certain specialized senses, especially “edging of stone on a pavement” (1805).

late 15c., “strap passing under the jaw of a horse” (used to restrain the animal), from Old French courbe (12c.) “curb on a horse,” from Latin curvus, from curvare “to bend” (see curve (v.)). Meaning “enclosed framework” is from 1510s, probably originally with a notion of “curved;” extended to margins of garden beds 1731; to “margin of stone between a sidewalk and road” 1791 (sometimes spelled kerb). Figurative sense of “a check, a restraint” is from 1610s.

1520s, of horses, “to lead to a curb,” from curb (n.). Figurative use from 1580s. Related: Curbed; curbing.


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