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iron·​clad ˈī(-ə)rn-ˈklad How to pronounce ironclad (audio)
: sheathed in iron armor
used especially of naval vessels
: so firm or secure as to be unbreakable: such as
: binding
an ironclad oath
: having no obvious weakness
an ironclad case against the defendant


2 of 2


iron·​clad ˈī(-ə)rn-ˌklad How to pronounce ironclad (audio)
: an armored naval vessel especially of the mid to late 19th century

Examples of ironclad in a Sentence

Adjective The company has an ironclad policy against revealing secrets to competitors. He has an ironclad alibi.
Recent Examples on the Web
Turns out that unsettling flash came from an automatic camera set up by their guide to record what a skeptical world still awaits - ironclad evidence of the existence of the Skunk Ape, Yeti, Sasquatch and other hulking, hairy relations. Miami Herald Archives, Miami Herald, 20 May 2024 Even ironclad protections don’t make journalists immune to public officials who don’t know or don’t care about constitutional protections. Daniel Walters, Idaho Statesman, 14 May 2024 And as the president said to the prime minister last night, that support for Israel's self-defense will stay ironclad. Nbc Universal, NBC News, 14 Apr. 2024 The call, three days after Israeli strikes killed seven World Central Kitchen workers, marked the first time the president has indicated a willingness to reconsider what has so far been ironclad support of Israel’s military campaign. Missy Khamvongsa, Washington Post, 5 Apr. 2024 The third circumstance is our ideal aspiration, the zero condition or being utterly and ironclad hallucination-free. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 29 Feb. 2024 The United States still has an ironclad commitment to help Israel with its self defense. Brian Bennett, TIME, 4 Apr. 2024 There aren’t prompts that universally will on an ironclad basis produce identical results from one generative AI to another. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 2 Mar. 2024 This is where America’s most popular tax-prep website asks you to sign away the ironclad privacy protections of your tax return, including the details of your income, home mortgage and student loan payments. Shira Ovide, Washington Post, 1 Mar. 2024
Europe’s shifting digital landscape also is forcing changes at other technology powerhouses such as Google and Facebook, but the new regulations strike at the core of Apple’s philosophy of maintaining ironclad control over every aspect of its products. Michael Liedtke, Fortune Europe, 7 Mar. 2024 Europe's shifting digital landscape is forcing changes at other technology powerhouses such as Google and Facebook, but the new regulations strike at the core of Apple's philosophy of maintaining ironclad control over every aspect of its products. Michael Liedtke, Quartz, 7 Mar. 2024 Singer and others also voiced concerns about the lack of price caps in the $900 million cost projection and said there’s no ironclad guarantee the owners will stay in Oklahoma City even if the arena is built. Sean Murphy, Fortune, 11 Dec. 2023 What Is Nandina? Nandina (Nandina domestica) is a large, semi-evergreen to evergreen shrub popular for its ironclad constitution, tolerance for sun or shade, striking foliage, and showy red berries. Steve Bender, Southern Living, 9 Dec. 2023 The union also wants minimum pay rates for the use of AI to create digital likenesses, as well as ironclad consent requirements. Gene Maddaus, Variety, 6 Nov. 2023 The lineup of Labour speakers — all singing from the same song sheet — underscored Mr. Starmer’s ironclad control over the party. Stephen Castle, New York Times, 10 Oct. 2023 The verdicts also were a form of vindication for Republicans who have spent years criticizing Madigan’s ironclad, decadeslong control of state government. Rick Pearson, Chicago Tribune, 5 May 2023 And credit freezes aren’t ironclad protection. Shira Ovide, Washington Post, 4 Apr. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ironclad.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


circa 1847, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1862, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ironclad was circa 1847

Dictionary Entries Near ironclad

Cite this Entry

“Ironclad.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 adjective
iron·​clad -ˈklad How to pronounce ironclad (audio)
: covered by iron armor
: rigorous sense 1, exacting
ironclad laws


2 of 2 noun
iron·​clad -ˌklad How to pronounce ironclad (audio)
: an armored naval vessel
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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