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  Dictionary Definition of tether

tether
noun
1. a rope, chain, or the like, by which an animal is fastened, as to a stake, so that its range of movement is limited.
2. the utmost length to which one can go in action; the utmost extent or limit of ability or resources.
-- verb (t)
3. to fasten or confine with or as with a tether.
-- phrase
4. the end of one's tether, the limit of one's possibilities, patience, or resources.
[ME tethir, apparently from Scandinavian; cf. Icel. tjodhr ]