Thursday, January 8, 2009

Word of the Day

hidebound\HYDE-bound\adj. 1: of a domestic animal: having a dry skin lacking in pliancy 2: having an inflexible or ultraconservative character

Example Sentence: The store failed when its hidebound owners refused to alter their business model to adjust for the changing economy.

Did you know? "Hidebound" has its origins in agriculture. The word, which appeared in English as "hyde bounde" in the 16th century, originally described cattle that, due to illness or poor feeding, had skin that clung to the skeleton and could not be pinched, loosened, or worked with the fingers. "Hidebound" has also been applied to humans - both literally, to describe people with tight skin, and figuratively. In its earliest figurative usage, "hidebound" meant "stingy" or "miserly." That sense has since fallen out of use, but a second figurative usage, describing people who are rigid or unyielding in their actions or beliefs, lives on in our language today.

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