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[hed-strawng, -strong] /ˈhɛdˌstrɔŋ, -ˌstrɒŋ/
determined to have one's own way; willful; stubborn; obstinate:
a headstrong young man.
proceeding from or exhibiting willfulness:
a headstrong course.
Origin of headstrong
1350-1400; Middle English heedstronge. See head, strong
Related forms
headstrongly, adverb
headstrongness, noun
Can be confused
headlong, headstrong.
1. tractable, docile. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for headstrong
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She had thrown the spell of her beauty over this headstrong, masterful man.

    The Foolish Virgin Thomas Dixon
  • One horse is patient and docile, the other wild and headstrong.

  • To be too headstrong and too open, that is the beginning of trouble.

  • She was a restless, headstrong girl, even then, who liked to astonish her friends.

    My Antonia Willa Cather
  • She hoped that he was not very angry with her, that he was not writing her down in his mind as a foolish and headstrong girl.

    A Gamble with Life Silas K. Hocking
British Dictionary definitions for headstrong


self-willed; obstinate
(of an action) heedless; rash
Derived Forms
headstrongly, adverb
headstrongness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for headstrong

"determined to have one's way," late 14c., from head (n.) + strong. Cf. Old English heafodbald "impudent," literally "head-bold."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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