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prescribe or proscribe?

What Is the Difference between "prescribe" and "proscribe"?

homeconfused wordsprescribe or proscribe?
the quick answer

The Quick Answer

To prescribe means to recommend or to authorize.
To proscribe means to forbid.

Prescribe

The verb to prescribe means to recommend or authorize.

Examples:
  • I have prescribed you a course of antibiotics.
  • The law prescribes a minimum of 10 years' incarceration for your
    offence.

Proscribe

The verb to proscribe means to forbid, to limit or to banish.

Examples:
  • These photos are worthless. Such images are proscribed by law.
  • Police have been tracking three members of the group, which was proscribed in the 80s.
  • Name one country that does not proscribe theft.
teachers note

A Note from Teacher

PRO IS BAD?

Proscribe causes confusion because many do not expect a word that starts with pro to have such negative connotations. (As a preposition and a prefix, pro often means for or supportive of.)


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