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EtymologyEdit

 
An aerial view of Kronborg, a castle and stronghold (sense 1) in Helsingør, Denmark, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site was immortalized as Elsinore in William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet.

From Middle English strong-hōld,[1] strong-holde, stranghalde (equivalent to strong +‎ hold), from Middle English strong (having physical strength, sturdy, strong; built to withstand assaults, fortified) (from Old English strang, strong (strong),[2] ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *strenk-, *streng- (stiff, tight)) + Middle English hōld (grasp, grip; control, possession, rule) (from Old English).[3]

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

stronghold (plural strongholds)

  1. A place built to withstand attack; a fortress.
    • 1919, Rudolf Cronau, “Women during the Middle Ages”, in Woman Triumphant: The Story of Her Struggles for Freedom, Education and Political Rights: Dedicated to All Noble-minded Women by an Appreciative Member of the Other Sex, New York, N.Y.: Published by R. Cronau, 340 East 198th Street, New York, OCLC 39457031, pages 84–85:
      For security's sake they [the Germas] gathered together in villages and cities. These they surrounded with heavy walls and towers, and protected them by castles, erected on steep cliffs and mountains. The custody of these strongholds was entrusted to the most efficient warriors, who in time formed a separate class, the nobility, from which the heads of the whole nation, the princes, kings and emperors were chosen.
  2. (figuratively) A place of domination by, or refuge or survival of, a particular group or idea.
    The last stronghold of the Cornish language.
    • 1826, [Mary Shelley], chapter X, in The Last Man. [...] In Three Volumes, volume I, Paris: Published by A. and W[illiam] Galignani, at the French, English, Italian, German, and Spanish Library, No. 18, rue Vivienne, OCLC 458836945, page 228:
      With the numerous soldiers of Asia, with all of their warlike stores, ships, and military engines, that wealth and power could command, the Turks at once resolved to crush an enemy which, creeping on by degrees, had from their strong-hold in the Morea acquired Thrace and Macedonia, and had led their armies even to the gates of Constantinople, while their extensive commercial relations gave every European nation an interest in their success.
    • 1843 December 19, Charles Dickens, “Stave I. Marley’s Ghost.”, in A Christmas Carol. In Prose. Being a Ghost Story of Christmas, London: Chapman & Hall, 186, Strand, OCLC 55746801, page 16:
      The Lord Mayor, in the stronghold of the mighty Mansion House, gave orders to his fifty cooks and butlers to keep Christmas as a Lord Mayor's household should; and even the little tailor, whom he had fined five shillings on the previous Monday for being drunk and blood-thirsty in the streets, stirred up to-morrow's pudding in his garret, while his lean wife and the baby sallied out to buy the beef.
    • 2015 May 10, Amy Sawitta Lefevre, “Thai King Leaves Hospital after Seven Months, Returns to Seaside Palace”, in Reuters[1]:
      Thailand has been broadly split along north-south political lines since Thaksin [Shinawatra]'s ouster. A bastion of the conservative, pro-establishment Democrat Party, southern Thailand historically hosts much of the country's wealth and tourism. The poorer, agrarian north and northeast, where Thaksin's populist policies won him legions of supporters, remain Shinawatra strongholds.
    • 2017 July 7, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, “The Ambitious War For The Planet Of The Apes Ends Up Surrendering to Formula”, in The A.V. Club[2], archived from the original on 27 November 2017:
      It's in this horse-opera mode that War For The Planet Of The Apes finds its most rewarding rhythms: in the parallels between Caesar's woodland stronghold and the archetypal frontier settlements of Western fiction; []

SynonymsEdit

TranslationsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ strong-hōld, n.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 28 December 2017.
  2. ^ strong, adj.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 28 December 2017.
  3. ^ hōld, n.(2)” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 28 December 2017.

Further readingEdit