[hand-kuhf] /ˈhændˌkʌf/

a ring-shaped metal device that can be locked around a person’s wrist, usually one of a pair connected by a short chain or linked bar; shackle:
The police put handcuffs on the suspect.
verb (used with object)
to put handcuffs on.
to restrain or thwart (someone) by or as if by handcuffing:
The amendments handcuffed the committee and prevented further action.
(transitive) to put handcuffs on (a person); manacle
(pl) a pair of locking metal rings joined by a short bar or chain for securing prisoners, etc

1640s as a decorative addition to a sleeve; 1690s as a type of restraining device, from hand (n.) + cuff (n.). Old English had hondcops “a pair of hand cuffs,” but the modern word is a re-invention. The verb is first attested 1720. Related: Handcuffed; handcuffing.

Related Terms

golden handcuffs


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