An action or influence that stops motion or expression; a restraint: Heavy rains were a check on the army's advance. The condition of being stopped or held back; restraint: kept my temper in check; holding agricultural pests in check with sprays. An abrupt stop in forward movement or progress; a halt. The act or an instance of inspecting or testing, as for accuracy or quality; examination: the careful check of each unit before sale; gave the car an oil check. A standard for inspecting or evaluating; a test. A check mark. A ticket or slip of identification: a baggage check. A bill at a restaurant or bar. Games A chip or counter used in gambling. A written order to a bank to pay the amount specified from funds on deposit; a draft. A small crack; a chink. A pattern of small squares, as on a chessboard. One of the squares of such a pattern. A fabric patterned with squares: a dress of pale green check. Games A move in chess that directly attacks an opponent's king but does not constitute a checkmate. Games The position or condition of a king so attacked. Sports The act of blocking or impeding an opponent in possession of the puck in ice hockey, either with one's body or one's stick. Games Used to declare that a chess opponent's king is in check. Informal Used to express agreement or understanding. To arrest the motion of abruptly; halt: checked the flow by shutting a valve. To hold in restraint; curb: check an impulse to laugh. See Synonyms at restrain. To slow the growth of; retard. To rebuke; rebuff. To inspect so as to determine accuracy, quality, or other condition; test: checked the brakes and lights for defects; checked out the system to make sure there were no errors in the software. To verify by consulting a source or authority: checked her facts before speaking; check a spelling in the dictionary.