Definition of recalcitrant adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//rɪˈkælsɪtrənt//
; NAmE NAmE//rɪˈkælsɪtrənt//
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unwilling to obey rules or follow instructions; difficult to control a recalcitrant child He was like a teacher encouraging a recalcitrant pupil. One option is to threaten recalcitrant ministers with the sack. Word Originmid 19th cent.: from Latin recalcitrant- ‘kicking out with the heels’, from the verb recalcitrare, based on calx, calc- ‘heel’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: recalcitrant