hobble

verb
hob·​ble | \ˈhä-bəl \
hobbled; hobbling\ˈhä-​b(ə-​)liŋ \

Definition of hobble 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to move along unsteadily or with difficulty especially : to limp along

transitive verb

1 : to cause to limp : make lame : cripple

2 [ probably alteration of hopple to hobble ]

a : to fasten together the legs of (an animal, such as a horse) to prevent straying : fetter

b : to place under handicap : hamper, impede

hobble

noun

Definition of hobble (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a hobbling movement

2 archaic : an awkward situation

3 : something used to hobble an animal

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hobble

Verb

hobbler \ˈhä-​b(ə-​)lər \ noun

Examples of hobble in a Sentence

Verb

She picked up her cane and hobbled across the room. She is sometimes hobbled by self-doubt. He has been hobbled by a knee injury.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Every Adams administration initiative, whether foreign or domestic, was denigrated in the press and hobbled in Congress. David S. Heidler And Jeanne T. Heidler, WSJ, "Midterms Have Been Punishing Incumbents Since 1826," 25 Oct. 2018 But if nothing else, iOS 12 is a convincing counterargument to the theory that Apple intentionally hobbles its old devices to force people to buy new ones. Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica, "iOS 12 on the iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 Plus, and iPad Mini 2: It’s actually faster!," 17 Sep. 2018 Arreaza also blamed Washington for his nation’s health and economic crisis, saying financial sanctions have hobbled the country and limited its ability to import medicine. Jim Wyss, miamiherald, "Organization of American States paves way for possible Venezuela expulsion," 5 June 2018 But for two decades, online access has been hobbled by a paywall on the judiciary's website, called PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records), which charges as much as 10 cents per page. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "New bill would finally tear down federal judiciary’s ridiculous paywall," 17 Sep. 2018 Though respected for his abilities and personal honesty, Meade has been hobbled by corruption allegations against both Peña Nieto and the PRI. Dudley Althaus, San Antonio Express-News, "Appealing to populists, Lopez Obrador on verge of winning Mexico’s presidency," 22 June 2018 North Korea's army, although large, uses outdated equipment and is likely severely hobbled by supply problems, particularly fuel. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Invading North Korea Is the Only Way to Stop All Its Nukes, Pentagon Says," 7 Nov. 2017 Regional Rivalry Sectarian infighting and regional tensions have hobbled Lebanon for decades -- the budget passed in 2017 was its first in 12 years. Bloomberg.com, "Lebanon Wins $11 Billion as Donors Push for Better Governance," 6 Apr. 2018 If that were true, every criminal and civil trial from Cape Girardeau to Cape Town would be similarly hobbled. The Kansas City Star Editorial Board, kansascity, "Secret investigation into secretive Gov. Greitens can’t be trusted | The Kansas City Star," 7 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hobble.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of hobble

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

1726, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hobble

Verb

Middle English hoblen; akin to Middle Dutch hobbelen to turn, roll

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hobble

Dictionary Entries near hobble

hobbil

Hobbism

hobbit

hobble

hobblebush

hobbledehoy

hobble out

Statistics for hobble

Last Updated

27 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hobble

The first known use of hobble was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hobble

hobble

verb

English Language Learners Definition of hobble

: to walk with difficulty because of injury or weakness

: to slow the movement, progress, or action of (someone or something)

: to keep (an animal) from straying or wandering by tying two legs together

hobble

verb
hob·​ble | \ˈhä-bəl \
hobbled; hobbling

Kids Definition of hobble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to walk slowly and with difficulty

hobble

noun

Kids Definition of hobble (Entry 2 of 2)

: a slow and difficult way of walking

hobble

verb
hob·​ble | \ˈhäb-əl \
hobbled; hobbling\-​(ə-​)liŋ \

Medical Definition of hobble 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to move along unsteadily or with difficulty especially : to limp along

transitive verb

1 : to cause to limp : make lame : cripple

2 : to fasten together the legs of (as a horse) to prevent straying

hobble

noun

Medical Definition of hobble (Entry 2 of 2)

: something used to hobble an animal

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on hobble

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hobble

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hobble

Spanish Central: Translation of hobble

Nglish: Translation of hobble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hobble for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hobble

What made you want to look up hobble? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to enclose within walls

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!