Webster 1913 Edition



To thrust one’s self upon a company or upon attention; to intrude.
Syn. – To
To intrude is to thrust one's self into a place, society, etc., without right, or uninvited; to obtrude is to force one's self, remarks, opinions, etc., into society or upon persons with whom one has no such intimacy as to justify such boldness.

Webster 1828 Edition



[L. obltrudo; ob and trudo, Eng. to thrust.]
To thrust in or on; to throw, crowd or thrust into any place or state by force or imposition, or without solicitation. Men obtrude their vain speculations upon the world.
A cause of common error is the credulity of men, that is, an easy assent to what is obtruded.
The objects of our senses obtrude their particular ideas upon our minds, whether we will or not.
To offer with unreasonable importunity; to urge upon against the will.
Why shouldst thou then obtrude this diligence in vain, where no acceptance it can find?
To obtrude one's self, to enter a place where one is not desired; to thrust one's self in uninvited, or against the will of the company.

Definition 2023





obtrude (third-person singular simple present obtrudes, present participle obtruding, simple past and past participle obtruded)

  1. (transitive) To proffer (something) by force; to impose (something) on someone or into some area. [from 16th c.]
    • 1651, Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan:
      By which we may see, that they who are not called to Counsell, can have no good Counsell in such cases to obtrude.
    • 1855, Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South:
      It was unusual with Margaret to obtrude her own subject of conversation on others; but, in this case, she was so anxious to prevent Mr. Thornton from feeling annoyance at the words he had accidentally overheard, that it was not until she had done speaking that she coloured all over with consciousness [...].
    • 2007, Andrew Martin, The Guardian, 16 Jul 2007:
      The prospect of people writing PhD theses that obtrude hard facts into the question of whether it's a) grim or b) nice up north is naturally worrying to all those of us who like to shout about those matters in the saloon bars of England.
  2. (intransitive) To become apparent in an unwelcome way, to be forcibly imposed; to jut in, to intrude (on or into). [from 16th c.]
    • 1853, Charlotte Brontë, Villette:
      Sometimes I dreamed strangely of disturbed earth, and of hair, still golden and living, obtruded through the coffin-chinks.
    • 1991, Roy Jenkins, A Life at the Centre:
      It was not only the police but the palace which obtruded on a home secretary's life.
    • 2010, Colin Greenland, The Guardian, 7 Aug 2010:
      In such a very chronological book, though, small anachronisms do obtrude.
  3. (reflexive) To impose (oneself) on others; to cut in. [from 17th c.]
    • 1934, Winston Churchill, Marlborough: His Life and Times, vol II:
      She obtruded herself upon the Queen; she protested her party views; she asked for petty favours, and attributed the refusals to the influence of Abigail.
    • 2004, Marc Abrahams, The Guardian, 13 Jan 2004:
      This scarcity of knowledge also obtruded itself in 1998, when three scientists in Wales published a report called "What Sort of Men Take Garlic Preparations?"
    • 2010, Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22, Atlantic 2011, p. 121:
      As 1968 began to ebb into 1969, however, and as “anticlimax” began to become a real word in my lexicon, another term began to obtrude itself.






  1. second-person singular present active imperative of obtrūdō