hobble [hob-uhl] SynonymsExamplesWord Originverb (used without object), hob·bled, hob·bling.
- to walk lamely; limp.
- to proceed irregularly and haltingly: His verses hobble with their faulty meters.
verb (used with object), hob·bled, hob·bling.
- to cause to limp: His tight shoes hobbled him.
- to fasten together the legs of (a horse, mule, etc.) by short lengths of rope to prevent free motion.
- to impede; hamper the progress of.
- an act of hobbling; an uneven, halting gait; a limp.
- a rope, strap, etc., used to hobble an animal.
- hobbles, a leg harness for controlling the gait of a pacer.
- Archaic. an awkward or difficult situation.
Origin of hobble 1300–50; Middle English hobelen, apparently akin to hob protuberance, uneven ground, and to Dutch hobbelen, German hoppeln to joltRelated formshob·bler, nounun·hob·bled, adjectiveun·hob·bling, adjectiveSynonyms for hobble hinder, restrict, frustrate, cramp.Antonyms for hobble 5. aid, assist, benefit. Related Words for hobble falter, stagger, shuffle, stumble, halt, hinder, hamstring, hamper, dodder, totter, clump, scuff, hitch, hog-tie, cramp, clog, fetter, leash, trammel, shackle Examples from the Web for hobble Contemporary Examples of hobble5.
This, more than any one scandal, is likely to hobble the party for the next few election cycles.
June 18, 2014
A few days before, she had managed to stand and hobble around the ward.
Paul Adrian Raymond
December 11, 2013
Hardly able to hobble into the room on his bruised and engorged feet, he sported black eyes.
August 15, 2012
Just the distraction that this kind of case creates can hobble even the most successful, well-run company.
April 27, 2012
Historical Examples of hobble
Thus neither animal could so much as hobble one way or the other.
Stewart Edward White
You know about as much of a motor boat as a pig knows of the hobble skirt.
G. Harvey Ralphson
The enemy was leading the general, who could just hobble, and Fitz, back to the camp.
Edwin L. Sabin
It must be hard work for him to hobble through the world on his wooden leg.
The excitement being over, it was with very great difficulty the crippled savage could hobble his way back to the camp.
John S. C. Abbott
British Dictionary definitions for hobble hobble verb
- (intr) to walk with a lame awkward movement
- (tr) to fetter the legs of (a horse) in order to restrict movement
- to progress unevenly or with difficulty
- (tr) to hamper or restrict (the actions or scope of a person, organization, etc)
- a strap, rope, etc, used to hobble a horse
- a limping gait
- British dialect a difficult or embarrassing situation
- a castrated ferret
Also (for senses 2, 5): hopple Derived Formshobbler, nounWord Origin for hobble C14: probably from Low German; compare Flemish hoppelen, Middle Dutch hobbelen to stammer Word Origin and History for hobble v.
c.1300, hoblen “to rock back and forth, toss up and down,” probably related to its Dutch cognate hobbelen (which, however, is not recorded before late 15c.).
Meaning “to walk lamely” is from c.1400. Transitive sense of “tie the legs (of an animal)” first recorded 1831, probably an alteration of 16c. hopple, cognate with Flemish hoppelen “to rock, jump,” which also is related to Dutch hobbelen. Sense of “hamper, hinder” is c.1870. Related: Hobbled; hobbling. The noun is 1727, from the verb.