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Meaning of hurdle

hur•dle

Pronunciation: (hûr'dl), [key]
— n., v., -dled, -dling.
—n.
  1. a portable barrier over which contestants must leap in certain running races, usually a wooden frame with a hinged inner frame that swings down under impact to prevent injury to a runner who does not clear it.
  2. a race in which contestants must leap over a number of such barriers placed at specific intervals around the track. Cf. high hurdles, low hurdles.
  3. any of various vertical barriers, as a hedge, low wall, or section of fence, over which horses must jump in certain types of turf races, as a steeplechase, but esp. an artificial barrier.
  4. a difficult problem to be overcome; obstacle.
  5. a movable rectangular frame of interlaced twigs, crossed bars, or the like, as for a temporary fence.
  6. a frame or sled on which criminals, esp. traitors, were formerly drawn to the place of execution.
—v.t.
  1. to leap over (a hurdle, barrier, fence, etc.), as in a race.
  2. to master (a difficulty, problem, etc.); overcome.
  3. to construct with hurdles; enclose with hurdles.
—v.i.
  1. to leap over a hurdle or other barrier.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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