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  1. (often used with a singular verb) wooded or partially uncleared and unsettled districts.
  2. any remote or isolated area.
adjective Also back·wood, back·woods·y.
  1. of or relating to the backwoods.
  2. unsophisticated; uncouth.

Origin of backwoods

An Americanism dating back to 1700–10; back1 + wood1(def 7)

Synonyms for backwoods

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2. hinterland, provinces, wilds, woodland; sticks, boondocks, boonies, bush, backwater. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for backwoods


pl n
  1. mainly US and Canadian partially cleared, sparsely populated forests
  2. any remote sparsely populated place
  3. (modifier) of, from, or like the backwoods
  4. (modifier) uncouth; rustic
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