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Definition of encumber:

  1. 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.
  2. To load with debts, or other legal claims; as, to encumber an estate with mortgages.

Synonyms:

manacle, hold back, freight, hold, charge, lade, hold up, retard, laden, trap, tighten up, pin down, short-circuit, stymie, weight, load, cumber, plague, shackle, foil, immobilize, let down, confine, limit, keep back, bring up against, trammel, hobble, intercept, hog-tie, disadvantage, over, balk, count against, tax, weigh down, stiffen, saddle, throttle, open, tie up, tighten, restrain, bound, lumber, intimidate, interfere, bog, keep, help, handcuff, embarrass, prevent, pin, counteract, constrain.

Usage examples: