Old English hindrian "to harm, injure, impair, check, repress," from Proto-Germanic *hinderojan (source also of Old Norse hindra, Old Frisian hinderia, Dutch hinderen, Old High German hintaron, German hindern "to keep back"), derivative verb from a root meaning "on that side of, behind" (see hind (adj.)); thus the ground sense is "to put or keep back," though this sense in English is recorded only from late 14c. Related: Hindered; hindering.
"situated in the rear, pertaining to the rear, toward the back," late 14c., probably from an unrecorded Old English adjective from hinder (adv.) "behind, back, afterward," but treated as a comparative of hind (adj.). Related to Old High German hintar, German hinter, Gothic hindar "behind" (prep.).
Middle English had hinderhede, literally "hinder-hood; posterity in time, inferiority in rank;" and hinderling "person fallen from moral or social respectability, wretch," from an Old English term of contempt for a person devoid of honor. Also compare Scottish hinderlins "the buttocks."
updated on July 17, 2015