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See more synonyms for hidebound on Thesaurus.com
  1. narrow and rigid in opinion; inflexible: a hidebound pedant.
  2. oriented toward or confined to the past; extremely conservative: a hidebound philosopher.
  3. (of a horse, cow, etc.) having the back and ribs bound tightly by the hide.
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Origin of hidebound

First recorded in 1550–60; hide2 + -bound1
Related formshide·bound·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for hidebound

antipathetic, averse, biased, bigoted, communist, conservative, contemptuous, dictatorial, disdainful, dogmatic, fanatical, fractious, hateful, illiberal, indignant, individualistic, inflexible, irate, irritable, jaundiced

Examples from the Web for hidebound

Contemporary Examples of hidebound

Historical Examples of hidebound

  • I am thankful that Lady Hamilton and I are not hidebound by any such superstitions.

    The Admiral

    Douglas Sladen

  • Not depraved, certainly, unless you insist on judging it by a hidebound ethic.


    Milton Lesser

  • It is more free and easy, not so hidebound and overrun with hypocrisy.

  • He comes from a part of the country that's not so hidebound by caste as this country.

    Nobody's Child

    Elizabeth Dejeans

  • The Amphibs were, in their way, as hidebound—no pun intended—as the Land-walkers.

    Rastignac the Devil

    Philip Jos Farmer

British Dictionary definitions for hidebound


  1. restricted by petty rules, a conservative attitude, etc
  2. (of cattle, etc) having the skin closely attached to the flesh as a result of poor feeding
  3. (of trees) having a very tight bark that impairs growth
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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 hidebound


1550s, from hide (n.1) + past tense of bind (v.). Original reference is to emaciated cattle with skin sticking closely to backbones and ribs; metaphoric sense of "restricted by narrow attitudes" is first recorded c.1600.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper