from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Obligatory: their bounden duty.
  • adj. Archaic Being under obligation; obliged.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Under an obligation; obliged (to do something)

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Bound; fastened by bonds.
  • Under obligation; bound by some favor rendered; obliged; beholden.
  • Made obligatory; imposed as a duty; binding.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Obliged; bound, or under obligation; beholden.
  • Appointed; indispensable; obligatory.
  • [In both senses archaic, its only present common use being in the phrase bounden duty.]

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. morally obligatory


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, past participle of binden, to bind, from Old English bindan; see bind.


  • Mr Virgo made it clear to the editor that it was his bounden duty to pass any information he might receive notifying the whereabouts of Biggs to police and this the editor said he would be happy to do...

    Unearthed: the scandal of the Sun, Ronnie Biggs and Scotland Yard

  • He feels it is his bounden duty to resurrect the ancient spirit of the Church and to deliver its message to the masters.

    Chapter 6: Adumbrations

  • No matter how much whisky was poured down his neck, O'Brien could not be brought to realize that it was his bounden and friendly duty to sell his claim.

    The Passing of Marcus O'Brien

  • If tomorrow we multiplied our effort to educate the next generation ten-fold, we should but begin our bounden duty.


  • If he manages to use these three 'Bs' to bamboozle a credulous electorate into voting him back into power it will be the bounden duty of the said Establishment to remove him.

    Tony Blair: The Next Labour Prime Minister?

  • It is the bounden duty of Australia A teams above all else to cut the Poms down to size before the big stuff starts, and just for a while mid-innings today, when England got the wobbles and lost a trio of wickets for 13 runs while still a hundred or so behind the hosts, it looked as if they might manage it once more.

    The Ashes 2010: Sublime Ian Bell dances to a century for England

  • May it please your good Lordship, That albeit we attend here on my Lady Elizabeth's Grace, our Mistress ... we do not forget our most bounden Duty, nor yet our Readiness in Words and Deeds to serve her Highness [Queen Mary] by all the Ways and Means that may stand in Us, both from her Grace, our Mistress, and of our own Parts also .. .166

    From Heads of Household to Heads of State: The Preaccession Households of Mary and Elizabeth Tudor, 1516-1558

  • On the transatlantic crossing homeward, he conversed with an American Catholic priest who said, “My country is just mad on this subject of drink and I have felt it my bounden duty as a priest to teach my flock how to make good honest liquor.”


  • In 1963, less than 3 months after Martin Luther King Jr., delivered his famous “I Have a Dream Speech,” he wrote in a column, “[It is] clearly the bounden duty of all intelligent Americans to proclaim and practice bigotry.”

    Boing Boing

  • Shall consider it my bounden duty to go by your instructions as best as I can.

    Letter from T.H. Yun to Young John Allen,January 18, 1889


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  • so it's my bounden duty ... HF 28

    December 7, 2006