\ ˈbīnd How to pronounce bind (audio) \
bound\ ˈbau̇nd How to pronounce bind (audio) \; binding

Definition of bind

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make secure by tying His hands were bound with rope.
b : to confine, restrain, or restrict as if with bonds … she was not wholly bound in mind by her middle-class existence— Delmore Schwartz
c : to put under an obligation binds himself with an oath
d : to constrain with legal authority The court's decision binds them to pay the fine.
2a : to wrap around with something so as to enclose or cover A silk sash bound her waist.
b : bandage bind their wounds
3 : to fasten round about when wreaths of laurel bound them
4 : to tie together binding the wheat into sheaves
5a : to cause to stick together tuna and celery bound by mayonnaise
b : to take up and hold (as by chemical forces) : combine with cellulose binds water
6 : constipate Cheese tends to bind him.
7 : to make a firm commitment for a handshake binds the deal
8 : to protect, strengthen, or decorate by a band or binding a carpet bound with a gold edging
9 : to apply the parts of the cover to (a book)
10 : to set at work as an apprentice : indenture He was bound out to a tailor for one year.
11 : to cause to have an emotional attachment the emotional ties that bind us
12 : to fasten together a pin bound the ends of the scarf

intransitive verb

1a : to form a cohesive mass A little milk will help the ingredients bind.
b : to combine or be taken up especially by chemical action antibody binds to a specific antigen
2 : to hamper free movement or natural action shorts that are guaranteed not to bind
3 : to become hindered from free operation Rust caused the door to bind in its frame.
4 : to exert a restraining or compelling effect a promise that binds



Definition of bind (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : something that binds
b : the act of binding : the state of being bound
c : a place where binding occurs
2 music : tie sense 3
3 : a position or situation in which one is hampered, constrained, or prevented from free movement or action got a bind on his opponent
in a bind
: in trouble seem to have gotten myself in a bind

Examples of bind in a Sentence

Verb She bound her hair in a ponytail. The machine binds the hay into bales. He doesn't like to wear clothes that bind. Noun It's a real bind having to meet all these deadlines. with our vacation week fast approaching, and no arrangements for the care of our pets, we were in a serious bind
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb So a cover-up commences that the local seems to hope will bind him to his new best friend. Dennis Harvey, Variety, 15 June 2022 Artisans bind fabrics using a thread by hand and make tiny bits one by one. Joanne Shurvell, Forbes, 25 Apr. 2022 As far as scientists know, all forms of THC bind to cannabinoid receptors in the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is what produces a high. Kaitlin Sullivan, NBC News, 28 June 2021 In some cases, their active sites — the pockets to which antiviral therapies bind — are 100% identical. Andy Plump, STAT, 19 May 2021 When blasted with high heat, charcoal becomes highly porous and develops a sponge-like ability to bind certain substances. Dr. Michael Daignault, USA TODAY, 5 May 2022 Altering the charge or polarity of a binding site further inhibits the ability of an antibody to bind, acting as a shield of sorts. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 3 May 2022 The next phase of the experiment was testing whether the acids that showed an ability to bind to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein could actually inhibit the virus's ability to penetrate the surface of human cells—and in effect, neutralize the virus. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, 14 Jan. 2022 According to India's health ministry, Delta Plus has the ability to bind more easily to lung cells and might be resistant to therapies that are used to treat COVID-19. Erin Corbett,, 4 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun And if oil prices — which have surged since Russia's invasion of Ukraine —climb even higher, that would put the Fed in an even bigger bind. Paul R. La Monica, CNN, 10 Mar. 2022 Public health is now trapped in an unenviable bind. Ed Yong, The Atlantic, 23 Oct. 2021 The three weeks of practice quarterback Dak Prescott missed with a latissimus strain puts the Cowboys in an offensive bind. David Moore, Dallas News, 29 Aug. 2021 The film focuses on the manager of a defunct casino, who must confront his parental failures when his reckless son needs to find a way out of an illicit bind. Elsa Keslassy, Variety, 26 Aug. 2021 The announcement Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that suggested vaccinated people no longer needed to wear masks indoors took her aback — and put her in an awkward bind. Los Angeles Times, 15 May 2021 Downing Street could, however, dig in come what may, placing the SNP in an almighty bind. Alasdair Lane, Forbes, 5 May 2021 The Russia-Ukraine crisis has taken out a big chunk of wheat suppliers from the world market, leaving countries that rely on them heavily, like Lebanon, in a bind. Ananya Bhattacharya, Quartz, 27 May 2022 This creates a strange bind for public-health officials who depend on the data that testing programs yield. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 27 May 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of bind


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1b


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for bind

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English bindan; akin to Old High German bintan to bind, Greek peisma cable, Sanskrit badhnāti he ties

Learn More About bind

Time Traveler for bind

Time Traveler

The first known use of bind was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near bind

Binche lace



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Statistics for bind

Last Updated

23 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Bind.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for bind


\ ˈbīnd How to pronounce bind (audio) \
bound\ ˈbau̇nd \; binding

Kids Definition of bind

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to tie or wrap securely (as with string or rope) The machine binds the hay into bales.
2 : to hold or restrict by force or obligation The oath binds you.
3 : to wrap or cover with a bandage bind a wound
4 : to cause to be joined together closely … the increased affection which comes to bind households…— Louisa May Alcott, Little Women
5 : to fasten together and enclose in a cover bind a book



Kids Definition of bind (Entry 2 of 2)

: a difficult situation I'm in a real bind.


\ ˈbīnd How to pronounce bind (audio) \
bound\ ˈbau̇nd How to pronounce bind (audio) \; binding

Medical Definition of bind

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to wrap up (an injury) with a cloth : bandage binding up the gash with clean gauze
2 : to take up and hold usually by chemical forces : combine with cellulose binds water
3 : to make costive : constipate

intransitive verb

1a : to form a cohesive mass
b : to combine or be taken up especially by chemical action antibody binds to a specific antigen
2 : to hamper free movement



Medical Definition of bind (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that binds
2 : the act of binding : the state of being bound — see double bind


transitive verb
\ ˈbīnd How to pronounce bind (audio) \
bound\ ˈbau̇nd How to pronounce bind (audio) \; binding

Legal Definition of bind

1a : to make responsible for an obligation (as under a contract) agents have the power to bind the insurer— R. I. Mehr
b : to burden with an obligation prevented married women from binding their property— J. H. Friedenthal et al.
2 : to exert control over : constrain by legal authority this court is bound by precedent
3 : to bring (an insurance policy) into effect by an oral communication or a binder

More from Merriam-Webster on bind

Nglish: Translation of bind for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bind for Arabic Speakers


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