Definition of hard-shelled in US English:

hard-shelled

adjective

  • 1Having a hard shell or surface; = "hardshell".

  • 2Difficult to solve or penetrate; intractable. Now rare.

  • 3Originally and chiefly US. Strongly or rigorously committed, uncompromising, especially in one's adherence to religious or political principles; hard-line; conservative.

  • 4Hardened, insensitive, callous; not easily moved.

  • 5Of a book: hardbacked. Somewhat rare.

Origin

Late 16th century; earliest use found in Thomas Moffett (1553–1604), physician and naturalist. From hard + shelled.

Pronunciation

hard-shelled

/ˈhɑːdʃɛld/