hell-bent for leather

hell-bent for leather

Inf. moving or behaving recklessly; riding a horse fast and recklessly. They took off after the horse thief, riding hell-bent for leather. Here comes the boss. She's not just angry; she's hell-bent for leather.
See also: leather

hell-bent for leather

Moving recklessly fast, as in Out the door she went, hell-bent for leather. The use of hell-bent in the sense of "recklessly determined" dates from the first half of the 1800s. Leather alludes to a horse's saddle and to riding on horseback; this colloquial expression may be an American version of the earlier British army jargon hell for leather, first recorded in 1889.
See also: leather

hell-bent for leather

Moving rapidly and with determination. “Hell” in this case strengthens the word “bent,” which means a direct route (although it sounds as though it should mean the opposite). “Leather” refers either to a saddle or to a whip used to urge a horse to move faster, or perhaps items. “Hell for leather” meaning “all deliberate haste” was a popular phrase in itself. Among a number of variants is “hell-bent for election,” said to have originated with the 1840 Maine gubernatorial race and appearing in an 1899 Stephen Crane story: “One puncher racin' his cow-pony hell-bent-for-election down Main Street.” Others are “hell-bent for breakfast,” “for Sunday,” and “for Georgia.”
See also: leather