heart·​en ˈhär-tᵊn How to pronounce hearten (audio)
heartened; heartening ˈhärt-niŋ How to pronounce hearten (audio)

transitive verb

: to give heart to : cheer
ˈhärt-niŋ-lē How to pronounce hearten (audio)
Choose the Right Synonym for hearten

encourage, inspirit, hearten, embolden mean to fill with courage or strength of purpose.

encourage suggests the raising of one's confidence especially by an external agency.

the teacher's praise encouraged the students to greater efforts

inspirit, somewhat literary, implies instilling life, energy, courage, or vigor into something.

patriots inspirited the people to resist

hearten implies the lifting of dispiritedness or despondency by an infusion of fresh courage or zeal.

a hospital patient heartened by good news

embolden implies the giving of courage sufficient to overcome timidity or reluctance.

emboldened by her first success, she tried an even more difficult climb

Example Sentences

The team's victory has heartened its fans. thinking we were hopelessly lost, we were heartened by the sight of a familiar farmhouse
Recent Examples on the Web George Orwell, especially through Animal Farm and 1984, has educated, inspired, and heartened many people for many years. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, 25 May 2023 Feel heartened, uplifted and more connected to the world and people around you as Arizona Storytellers share stories from the neighborhood at the next show on Tuesday, June 6. Jodicee Arianna, The Arizona Republic, 16 May 2023 But he was heartened by the surprising recent success of Texas House Bill 2744, which would raise to 21 the minimum age for purchasing certain assault-style rifles; a house committee this week advanced the bill with Republican support. Marc Ramirez, USA TODAY, 10 May 2023 In a statement Thursday, City Councilor Ed Flynn, whose district includes Chinatown, spoke to the historical significance of Johnny Court and said he was heartened to hear of the appeals court ruling. Danny Mcdonald, BostonGlobe.com, 13 Apr. 2023 At first, Corado was heartened by the support that flowed after Mely’s death. Libor Jany, Los Angeles Times, 28 Apr. 2023 Snyder was heartened by the performance against the Heat. Gary Washburn, BostonGlobe.com, 12 Apr. 2023 Still, Tyson has received many positive responses across social media, and was heartened by people’s interest in learning more about gender-affirming care. Miles Klee, Rolling Stone, 11 Apr. 2023 And while Houston tallied 60 losses this season, Eason should be heartened by his personal performance, a campaign that featured 9.3 points and 1.2 steals per game on 45 percent shooting. Michael Shapiro, Chron, 10 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hearten.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1524, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hearten was in 1524

Dictionary Entries Near hearten

Cite this Entry

“Hearten.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hearten. Accessed 10 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


heart·​en ˈhärt-ᵊn How to pronounce hearten (audio)
heartened; heartening ˈhärt-niŋ How to pronounce hearten (audio)
: to cheer up : encourage

More from Merriam-Webster on hearten

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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