Made with the back of the dominant hand facing forward: hit a backhand shot over the net.
a. A backhand stroke or shot, as in tennis or hockey.
b. A position for controlling a ball or puck, in which the back of the dominant hand faces forward: moved the puck to his backhand before shooting.
c. A catch made in baseball by reaching across the body with the palm turned toward the ball.
2. Handwriting characterized by letters that slant to the left.
With a backhanded stroke or motion.
tr.v. back·hand·ed, back·hand·ing, back·hands
To perform, catch, or hit with a backhand: She backhanded the ball crosscourt.
(click for a larger image)backhand
Roger Federer of Switzerland at Wimbledon in 2009
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.