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See more synonyms for stiff-necked on Thesaurus.com
  1. having a stiff neck; having torticollis.
  2. haughty and obstinate; refractory.
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Origin of stiff-necked

First recorded in 1520–30
Related formsstiff·neck·ed·ly [stif-nek-id-lee, -nekt-lee] /ˈstɪfˈnɛk ɪd li, -ˈnɛkt li/, adverbstiff·neck·ed·ness, noun

Synonyms for stiff-necked

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for stiffnecked

tough, harsh, flinty, hard-nosed, strict, rigid, grim, steely, tenacious, unshakable, single-minded, intractable, steadfast, willful, perverse, persistent, ornery, inflexible, determined, headstrong

Examples from the Web for stiffnecked

Historical Examples of stiffnecked

  • You are a stiffnecked daughter, but my whip is pliant and will make you pliant too.

    Plays by August Strindberg, Third Series

    August Strindberg

  • He is stiffnecked, but hath no evil in his will, except that he resists me.

    A Pilgrim Maid

    Marion Ames Taggart

  • The Kaiser is stiffnecked because he does not believe you are going to fight this time.

  • So stiffnecked a man, so obstinate, so unclerical,—so determined to make much of little!

    Dr. Wortle's School

    Anthony Trollope

  • I hope you will not accuse me of being too stiffnecked; in other respects I am certainly docile.

British Dictionary definitions for stiffnecked


  1. haughtily stubborn or obstinate
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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 stiffnecked


1520s, from stiff (adj.), translating Latin dura cervice in Vulgate, from Greek sklero trachelos, a literal translation from Hebrew qesheh 'oref.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper