[ ob-stuh-nit ]
See synonyms for: obstinateobstinatelyobstinateness on Thesaurus.com

  1. firmly or stubbornly adhering to one's purpose, opinion, etc.; not yielding to argument, persuasion, or entreaty.

  2. characterized by inflexible persistence or an unyielding attitude; inflexibly persisted in or carried out: obstinate advocacy of high tariffs.

  1. not easily controlled or overcome: the obstinate growth of weeds.

  2. not yielding readily to treatment, as a disease.

Origin of obstinate

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English, from Latin obstinātus (past participle of obstināre “to set one's mind on, be determined”), equivalent to ob-ob- + -stin-, combining form of stan- (derivative of stāre “to stand,” stand) + -ātus-ate1

synonym study For obstinate

1. See stubborn.

Other words for obstinate

Opposites for obstinate

Other words from obstinate

  • ob·sti·nate·ly, adverb
  • ob·sti·nate·ness, noun
  • su·per·ob·sti·nate, adjective
  • su·per·ob·sti·nate·ly, adverb
  • su·per·ob·sti·nate·ness, noun
  • un·ob·sti·nate, adjective
  • un·ob·sti·nate·ly, adverb

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use obstinate in a sentence

  • King Edward refused to believe the evidence of his senses, and obstinately refused to quit the field.

    King Robert the Bruce | A. F. Murison
  • The more his kind wife exerted herself to comfort him, the more obstinately he persisted in maintaining his own sombre views.

    The World Before Them | Susanna Moodie
  • The Mantatees obstinately held their ground, seeming determined rather to perish than flee, which they might easily have done.

    Robert Moffat | David J. Deane
  • God, whom they call so good, appears sometimes obstinately deaf to their entreaties.

    Letters To Eugenia | Paul Henri Thiry Holbach

British Dictionary definitions for obstinate


/ (ˈɒbstɪnɪt) /

  1. adhering fixedly to a particular opinion, attitude, course of action, etc

  2. self-willed or headstrong

  1. difficult to subdue or alleviate; persistent: an obstinate fever

Origin of obstinate

C14: from Latin obstinātus, past participle of obstināre to persist in, from ob- (intensive) + stin-, variant of stare to stand

Derived forms of obstinate

  • obstinately, adverb

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