robin hood

robin hood


  1. a legendary English outlaw of the 12th century, hero of many ballads, who robbed the rich to give to the poor: a popular model of courage, generosity and justice, as well as of skill in archery, he lived and presided over his band of followers chiefly in Sherwood Forest.


  1. John Bell,1831–79, Confederate general in the U.S. Civil War.
  2. Raymond Math·ew·son [math-yoo-suh n] /ˈmæθ yu sən/, 1881–1934, U.S. architect.
  3. Robin. Robin Hood.
  4. Thomas,1799–1845, English poet and humorist.
  5. Mount, a volcanic peak in N Oregon, in the Cascade Range. 11,253 feet (3430 meters).


  1. a legendary English outlaw of the reign of Richard I, who according to tradition lived in Sherwood Forest and robbed the rich to give to the poor


  1. a loose head covering either attached to a cloak or coat or made as a separate garment
  2. something resembling this in shape or use
  3. the US and Canadian name for bonnet (def. 3)
  4. the folding roof of a convertible car
  5. a hoodlike garment worn over an academic gown, indicating its wearer’s degree and university
  6. falconry a close-fitting cover, placed over the head and eyes of a falcon to keep it quiet when not hunting
  7. biology a structure or marking, such as the fold of skin on the head of a cobra, that covers or appears to cover the head or some similar part


  1. (tr) to cover or provide with or as if with a hood


  1. slang short for hoodlum (def. 1)


  1. Robin See Robin Hood
  2. Samuel, 1st Viscount. 1724–1816, British admiral. He fought successfully against the French during the American Revolution and the French Revolutionary Wars
  3. Thomas. 1799–1845, British poet and humorist: his work includes protest poetry, such as The Song of the Shirt (1843) and The Bridge of Sighs (1844)

“covering,” Old English hod “hood,” from Proto-Germanic *hodaz (cf. Old Saxon, Old Frisian hod “hood,” Middle Dutch hoet, Dutch hoed “hat,” Old High German huot “helmet, hat,” German Hut “hat,” Old Frisian hode “guard, protection”), from PIE *kadh- “cover” (see hat).

Modern spelling is early 1400s to indicate a “long” vowel, which is no longer pronounced as such. Meaning “removable cover for an automobile engine” attested by 1905. Little Red Riding Hood (1729) translates Charles Perrault’s Petit Chaperon Rouge (“Contes du Temps Passé” 1697).


“gangster,” 1930, American English, shortened form of hoodlum.


“to put a hood on,” c.1200, from hood (n.1). Related: Hooded; hooding.


shortened form of neighborhood, by 1987, U.S. black slang.

A legendary robber of the Middle Ages in England, who stole from the rich and gave to the poor. An excellent archer, he lived in Sherwood Forest with the fair Maid Marian, the stalwart Little John, the priest Friar Tuck, the musician Allan-a-Dale, and others who helped him rob rich landlords and thwart his chief enemy, the sheriff of Nottingham.

A character of English legend, the subject of many ballads (see also ballad) and stories since the fourteenth century. (See under “Mythology and Folklore.”)

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