—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. hurdles,(used with a sing. v.) 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. Chiefly Brit.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.