- performed with the hand turned backward, crosswise, or in any oblique direction so that the palm of the hand faces in the direction of the body and the back of the hand faces in the direction of forward movement.
- sloping in a downward direction from left to right: backhanded writing.
- oblique or ambiguous in meaning; indirect; insincere or malicious; wry: backhanded methods; a backhanded compliment.
- Ropemaking. noting a rope in which the yarns and the strands are laid in the same direction, the rope itself being laid in the opposite direction.
- with the hand across the body; backhand: He caught the ball backhanded.
- a stroke, slap, etc., made with the palm of the hand turned toward the body and the back of the hand turned in the direction of the stroke, slap, etc.
- (in tennis, squash, etc.) a stroke made from the side of the body opposite to that of the hand holding the racket, paddle, etc.
- handwriting that slopes toward the left.
- (in tennis, squash, etc.) of, relating to, or noting a stroke made from the side of the body opposite to that of the hand holding the racket, paddle, etc.Compare forehand(def 1).
- with the back of the hand: He hit him backhand across the face.
- from across the body; backhanded: She returned the ball backhand on the first serve.
verb (used with object)
- to strike with the back of the hand.
- to hit, produce, or accomplish with a backhand.
- to catch (a ball or the like) backhanded.
- (of a blow, shot, stroke, etc) performed with the arm moving across the body
- double-edged; equivocala backhanded compliment
- (of handwriting) slanting to the left
- (of a rope) twisted in the opposite way to the normal right-handed direction
- in a backhanded manner
- a stroke made across the body with the back of the hand facing the direction of the stroke
- (as modifier)a backhand return
- the side on which backhand strokes are made
- handwriting slanting to the left
- with a backhand stroke
- sport to play (a shot) backhand