See more synonyms for bound on
  1. tied; in bonds: a bound prisoner.
  2. made fast as if by a band or bond: She is bound to her family.
  3. secured within a cover, as a book.
  4. under a legal or moral obligation: He is bound by the terms of the contract.
  5. destined; sure; certain: It is bound to happen.
  6. determined or resolved: He is bound to go.
  7. Pathology. constipated.
  8. Mathematics. (of a vector) having a specified initial point as well as magnitude and direction.Compare free(def 32).
  9. held with another element, substance, or material in chemical or physical union.
  10. (of a linguistic form) occurring only in combination with other forms, as most affixes.Compare free(def 35).
  1. bound up in/with,
    1. inseparably connected with.
    2. devoted or attached to: She is bound up in her teaching.

Origin of bound

past participle and past tense of bind
Related formsbound·ness, noun

Synonyms for bound

See more synonyms for on
5. liable, obligated, obliged, compelled.


verb (used without object)
  1. to move by leaps; leap; jump; spring: The colt bounded through the meadow.
  2. to rebound, as a ball; bounce: The ball bounded against the wall.
  1. a leap onward or upward; jump.
  2. a rebound; bounce.

Origin of bound

1545–55; < Middle French bond a leap, bondir to leap, orig. resound ≪ Vulgar Latin *bombitīre for *bombitāre to buzz, whiz (Latin bomb(us) (see bomb) + -it- intensive suffix + -ā- thematic vowel + -re infinitive suffix)
Related formsbound·ing·ly, adverb
Can be confusedbind bound

Synonyms for bound

See more synonyms for on
1. See skip1.


  1. Usually bounds. limit or boundary: the bounds of space and time; within the bounds of his estate; within the bounds of reason.
  2. something that limits, confines, or restrains.
  3. bounds,
    1. territories on or near a boundary.
    2. land within boundary lines.
  4. Mathematics. a number greater than or equal to, or less than or equal to, all the numbers in a given set.Compare greatest lower bound, least upper bound, lower bound, upper bound.
verb (used with object)
  1. to limit by or as if by bounds; keep within limits or confines.
  2. to form the boundary or limit of.
  3. to name or list the boundary of.
verb (used without object)
  1. to abut.
  1. out of bounds,
    1. beyond the official boundaries, prescribed limits, or restricted area: The ball bounced out of bounds.
    2. forbidden; prohibited: The park is out of bounds to students.

Origin of bound

1175–1225; Middle English bounde < Anglo-French; Old French bone, bonde, variant of bodne < Medieval Latin budina, of uncertain origin; cf. bourn2
Related formsbound·a·ble, adjective

Synonyms for bound

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for bounding

Historical Examples of bounding

  • Before him was bounding the faint patch of white he had discovered.

    White Fang

    Jack London

  • Can you eat an unskinned hare, or dine on the haunch of a bounding stag?

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • Her step, once bounding and elastic, became slow and uncertain.

    Roland Cashel

    Charles James Lever

  • Footsteps sounded from the hall; quick, bounding, they passed her door.


    Jane Abbott

  • With such pedigree, why should not this bounding thoroughbred win the Derby?

    Oswald Langdon

    Carson Jay Lee

British Dictionary definitions for bounding


  1. the past tense and past participle of bind
  1. in bonds or chains; tied with or as if with a ropea bound prisoner
  2. (in combination) restricted; confinedhousebound; fogbound
  3. (postpositive , foll by an infinitive) destined; sure; certainit's bound to happen
  4. (postpositive, often foll by by) compelled or obliged to act, behave, or think in a particular way, as by duty, circumstance, or convention
  5. (of a book) secured within a cover or bindingto deliver bound books See also half-bound
  6. (postpositive, foll by on) US resolved; determinedbound on winning
  7. linguistics
    1. denoting a morpheme, such as the prefix non-, that occurs only as part of another word and not as a separate word in itselfCompare free (def. 21)
    2. (in systemic grammar) denoting a clause that has a nonfinite predicator or that is introduced by a binder, and that occurs only together with a freestanding clauseCompare freestanding
  8. logic (of a variable) occurring within the scope of a quantifier that indicates the degree of generality of the open sentence in which the variable occurs: in (x) (Fxbxy), x is bound and y is freeSee free (def. 22)
  9. bound up with closely or inextricably linked withhis irritability is bound up with his work
  10. I'll be bound I am sure (something) is true


  1. to move forwards or make (one's way) by leaps or jumps
  2. to bounce; spring away from an impact
  1. a jump upwards or forwards
  2. by leaps and bounds with unexpectedly rapid progessher condition improved by leaps and bounds
  3. a sudden pronounced sense of excitementhis heart gave a sudden bound when he saw her
  4. a bounce, as of a ball

Word Origin for bound

C16: from Old French bond a leap, from bondir to jump, resound, from Vulgar Latin bombitīre (unattested) to buzz, hum, from Latin bombus booming sound


  1. (tr) to place restrictions on; limit
  2. (when intr, foll by on) to form a boundary of (an area of land or sea, political or administrative region, etc)
  1. maths
    1. a number which is greater than all the members of a set of numbers (an upper bound), or less than all its members (a lower bound)See also bounded (def. 1)
    2. more generally, an element of an ordered set that has the same ordering relation to all the members of a given subset
    3. whence, an estimate of the extent of some set
  2. See bounds

Word Origin for bound

C13: from Old French bonde, from Medieval Latin bodina, of Gaulish origin


    1. (postpositive, often foll by for)going or intending to go towards; on the way toa ship bound for Jamaica; homeward bound
    2. (in combination)northbound traffic

Word Origin for bound

C13: from Old Norse buinn, past participle of būa to prepare
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

Word Origin and History for bounding



"to leap," 1580s, from French bondir "to rebound, resound, echo," from Old French bondir "to leap, rebound; make a noise, beat (a drum)," 13c., ultimately "to echo back," from Vulgar Latin *bombitire "to buzz, hum" (see bomb (n.)), perhaps on model of Old French tentir, from Vulgar Latin *tinnitire.



"fastened," mid-14c., in figurative sense of "compelled," from bounden, past participle of bind (v.). Meaning "under obligation" is from late 15c.; the literal sense "made fast by tying" is the latest recorded (1550s).



"ready to go," c.1200, boun, from Old Norse buinn past participle of bua "to prepare," also "to dwell, to live," from Proto-Germanic *bowan (cf. Old High German buan "to dwell," Old Danish both "dwelling, stall"), from PIE root *bheue- "to be, exist, dwell" (see be). Final -d is presumably through association with bound (adj.1).



"limit," c.1200, from Anglo-Latin bunda, from Old French bonde "limit, boundary, boundary stone" (12c., Modern French borne), variant of bodne, from Medieval Latin bodina, perhaps from Gaulish. Now chiefly in out of bounds, which originally referred to limits imposed on students at schools.



"to form the boundary of," also "to set the boundaries of," late 14c., from bound (n.). Related: Bounded; bounding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with bounding


In addition to the idioms beginning with bound

  • bound and determined to
  • bound for
  • bound hand and foot
  • bound to, be
  • bound up in

also see:

  • by leaps and bounds
  • duty bound
  • honor bound
  • out of bounds
  • within bounds

Also see underbind.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.