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[ahy-ern-fis-tid] /ˈaɪ ərnˈfɪs tɪd/
ruthless, harsh, and tyrannical:
an ironfisted dictator.
stingy; tight-fisted.
Origin of ironfisted
First recorded in 1850-55; iron + fist1 + -ed3 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for iron-fisted
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • And what does the iron-fisted Colonel say as to thee for a son-in-law?

    Lorimer of the Northwest Harold Bindloss
  • Haggarty, the iron-fisted cant-hook man, who had drawn Kent pay for years, took up the matter in the bunk-house that night.

    The Boss of Wind River David Goodger (
  • But they paid no attention––which showed that there was something they feared more even than the iron-fisted Chief.

    In the Morning of Time Charles G. D. Roberts
  • Time, the iron-fisted Nihilist, will knock them all down some day and bid mankind begin anew.

    Doctor Claudius, A True Story F. Marion Crawford
  • I understood that if I cut it out and went up there and let that iron-fisted Irishman slam me around, that I'd come out all right.

    The Danger Mark Robert W. Chambers
Slang definitions & phrases for iron-fisted



Having a fist or grip strong as iron: The company appears to have iron-fisted control of the market (1828+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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