Word Origin & History
1846 in figurative sense of "aiming to produce conformity by arbitrary means," from Procrustes (1583), mythical robber of Attica who seized travelers, tied them to his bed, and either stretched their limbs or lopped of their legs to make them fit it. The name is Gk. Prokroustes "one who stretches," from
prokrouein "to beat out, stretch out," from pro- "before" + krouein "to strike."