adjective stub·born \ˈstə-bərn\

: refusing to change your ideas or to stop doing something

: difficult to deal with, remove, etc.

Full Definition of STUBBORN

a (1) :  unreasonably or perversely unyielding :  mulish (2) :  justifiably unyielding :  resolute
b :  suggestive or typical of a strong stubborn nature <a stubborn jaw>
:  performed or carried on in an unyielding, obstinate, or persistent manner <stubborn effort>
:  difficult to handle, manage, or treat <a stubborn cold>
:  lasting <stubborn facts>
stub·born·ly adverb
stub·born·ness \-bər(n)-nəs\ noun

Examples of STUBBORN

  1. She's wrong, but she's too stubborn to admit it.
  2. I admire his stubborn refusal to quit.
  3. trying to treat a stubborn infection
  4. Louise was not the first to posit the idea of a miniature horse ancestral to the Arab; but she was the only one stubborn enough to prove it. —Jason Elliot, Mirrors of the Unseen, 2006

Origin of STUBBORN

Middle English stibourne, stuborn
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of STUBBORN

obstinate, dogged, stubborn, pertinacious, mulish mean fixed and unyielding in course or purpose. obstinate implies usually an unreasonable persistence <an obstinate proponent of conspiracy theories>. dogged suggests an admirable often tenacious and unwavering persistence <pursued the story with dogged perseverance>. stubborn implies sturdiness in resisting change which may or may not be admirable <a person too stubborn to admit error>. pertinacious suggests an annoying or irksome persistence <a pertinacious salesclerk refusing to take no for an answer>. mulish implies a thoroughly unreasonable obstinacy <a mulish determination to have his own way>.
STUBBORN Defined for Kids


adjective stub·born \ˈstə-bərn\

Definition of STUBBORN for Kids

:  refusing to change an opinion or course of action in spite of difficulty or urging <She's too stubborn to ask for help.>
:  persistent <a stubborn cough>
:  difficult to handle, manage, or treat <a stubborn stain>
stub·born·ly adverb
stub·born·ness noun


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