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adjective stub·born \ˈstə-bərn\

Simple Definition of stubborn

  • : refusing to change your ideas or to stop doing something

  • : difficult to deal with, remove, etc.

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of stubborn

  1. 1a (1) :  unreasonably or perversely unyielding :  mulish (2) :  justifiably unyielding :  resoluteb :  suggestive or typical of a strong stubborn nature <a stubborn jaw>

  2. 2 :  performed or carried on in an unyielding, obstinate, or persistent manner <stubborn effort>

  3. 3 :  difficult to handle, manage, or treat <a stubborn cold>

  4. 4 :  lasting <stubborn facts>

stubbornly adverb
stubbornness play \-bər(n)-nəs\ noun

Examples of stubborn in a sentence

  1. 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

  2. To remove stubborn price tags from items like dishes and glassware, I use a cotton pad or Q-tip soaked with rubbing alcohol. The alcohol dissolves the sticky glue and doesn't mess up my manicure. —Kathe Palmucci, Real Simple, April 2003

  3. In the search for strategies to deal with the stubborn and deadly problem of driving under the influence, many cops are turning to an unusual tactic: Recruiting volunteer drinkers and drug users to teach officers to recognize impaired drivers. —Russell Gold, Wall Street Journal, 29 Oct. 2002

  4. She's wrong, but she's too stubborn to admit it.

  5. I admire his stubborn refusal to quit.

  6. trying to treat a stubborn infection

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 Students

  1. 1 :  refusing to change an opinion or course of action in spite of difficulty or urging <She's too stubborn to ask for help.>

  2. 2 :  persistent <a stubborn cough>

  3. 3 :  difficult to handle, manage, or treat <a stubborn stain>

stubbornly adverb
stubbornness noun

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to expose to danger or risk

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