Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia.
Related to duty bound: do duty
Obligated or expected to do something. Now that our parents are dead, I'm duty bound to care for my siblings. As a parent, you are duty bound to protect your child.
(to do something) forced by a sense of duty and honor to do something. Good evening, madam. I'm duty bound to inform you that we have arrested your husband. No one made me say that. I was duty bound.
Obliged, as in You're duty bound to help your little brother. [c. 1900]
duty boundmorally or legally obliged to do something.
Obliged: You are duty bound to help your little sister and brother.
duty bound, to be
To be firmly obligated. This term is derived from bounden duty, which dates from the 1500s and was actually redundant, since from the 1400s bound also meant “under obligations.” The term also retains this form three centuries later: “It was his bounden duty to accept the office” (Harriet Martineau, The Manchester Strike, 1833). At some point this locution was grammatically changed to the present participial usage, as in “I’m duty bound to report this violation to the dean.”
See also: duty