1

heavy

play
adjective \ ˈhe-vē \
Updated on: 26 Jul 2017

Definition of heavy

heavier; heaviest
1 a :having great weight; also :characterized by mass or weight
  • how heavy is it?
b :having a high specific gravity :having great weight in proportion to bulk
  • Lead and gold are heavy metals.
c (1) of an isotope :having or being atoms of greater than normal mass for that element
  • heavy carbons
(2) of a chemical compound :containing heavy isotopes
  • heavy ammonia
2 :difficult to bear; specifically :causing or characterized by severe pain or suffering
  • a heavy sorrow
3 :of weighty import :serious
  • heavy consequences
4 :characterized by depth or intensity :profound
  • a heavy silence
5 a :borne down by something oppressive :burdened
  • returned with heavy spirit
b :pregnant; especially :approaching parturition
  • She is heavy with child.
6 a :slow or dull from loss of vitality or resiliency :sluggish
  • a tired heavy step
b :lacking sparkle or vivacity :drab
  • a heavy writing style
c :lacking mirth or gaiety :cheerless
d :characterized by declining prices
  • The market is heavy.
7 :dulled with weariness :drowsy
  • eyes were growing heavy
8 :greater in quantity or quality than the average of its kind or class: such as
a :of unusually large size or amount
  • a heavy turnout
b :of great force
  • heavy seas
c :threatening to rain or snow
  • a heavy sky
  • heavy clouds
d (1) :impeding motion
  • heavy traffic
(2) :full of clay and inclined to hold water
  • heavy soil
e :coming as if from a depth :loud
  • heavy breathing
f :thick, dense
  • a heavy beard
  • a heavy growth of timber
  • heavy syrup
g :oppressive, overwhelming
  • heavy perfume
  • heavy weather
  • rule with a heavy hand
h :steep, acute
  • on a heavy grade
i :laborious, difficult
  • heavy going
j :immoderate
  • a heavy smoker
k :more powerful than usual for its kind
  • a heavy cavalry
  • a heavy cruiser
l :of large capacity or output
  • a heavy pump
9 a :very rich and hard to digest
  • heavy desserts
b :not properly raised or leavened
  • heavy bread
10 :producing goods (such as coal, steel, or chemicals) used in the production of other goods
  • heavy industry
11 a :having stress (see 1stress 5a)
  • a heavy rhythm
used especially of syllables in accentual verse
b :being the strongest degree of stress in speech
  • the heavy stress on the first syllable of basketball
12 :relating to theatrical parts of a grave or somber nature
  • playing heavy roles
13 :possessing a high degree or a great deal of something specified :long
  • heavy on ideas
14 :important, prominent
  • a heavy politician

heaviness

noun

Examples of heavy in a Sentence

  1. Is that box too heavy for you to lift? No, it's not very heavy.

  2. The truck was carrying a heavy load.

  3. The man was six feet tall with a heavy build.

  4. Turnout for the election is expected to be heavy.

  5. We got caught in heavy traffic.

  6. Heavy rains caused flooding in the area.

  7. She was wearing sunglasses and heavy makeup.

  8. The storm caused heavy damage to the building.

  9. The company is facing heavy losses this quarter.

  10. a day of heavy fighting

Recent Examples of heavy from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'heavy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of heavy

Middle English hevy, from Old English hefig; akin to Old High German hebīc heavy, Old English hebban to lift — more at heave

Synonym Discussion of heavy

heavy, weighty, ponderous, cumbrous, cumbersome mean having great weight. heavy implies that something has greater density or thickness than the average of its kind or class.
    • a heavy child for his age
weighty suggests having actual and not just relative weight.
    • a load of weighty boxes
ponderous implies having great weight because of size and massiveness with resulting great inertia.
    • ponderous elephants in a circus parade
cumbrous and cumbersome imply heaviness and bulkiness that make for difficulty in grasping, moving, carrying, or manipulating.
    • wrestled with the cumbrous furniture
    • early cameras were cumbersome and inconvenient

2

heavy

adverb

Definition of heavy

:to a great or overwhelming degree
  • weighed heavy on her mind
:with or as if with great weight :in a heavy manner :heavily
  • Clouds hung heavy in the sky.

Examples of heavy in a Sentence

  1. The smoke hung heavy in the air.

Recent Examples of heavy from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'heavy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of heavy

see 1heavy


3

heavy

noun

Definition of heavy

plural heavies
2 a :a theatrical role of a dignified or somber character; also :an actor playing such a role
b :a character in a story or play who opposes the hero :villain
c :one blamed for a particular evil or difficulty :villain
d :someone or something influential, serious, or important

Examples of heavy in a Sentence

  1. He played the heavy in film after film.

  2. The conference will be attended by several media heavies.

  3. They have become one of the industry heavies.

Recent Examples of heavy from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'heavy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of heavy

1897


Financial Definition of HEAVY

heavy

What It Is

In the investing world, heavy refers to a security whose price can't seem to rise.

How It Works

Let's say Company XYZ has been trading between $12 and $15 a share for the last six months despite two quarters of good earnings. We might say the stock is heavy.

Why It Matters

Sometimes individual securities aren't the only things that are heavy; the whole market can be heavy. In those cases, the imbalance of buyers and sellers can create an opportunity to buy certain worthy stocks while they are "on sale." However, some technical analysis might find that a heavy market reflects investor hesitancy about the market and could be the precursor to a market that is about to take a big dip.


HEAVY Defined for English Language Learners

heavy

play
adjective

Definition of heavy for English Language Learners

  • : having great weight : difficult to lift or move

  • : large in size and weight

  • : having a particular weight


heavy

adverb

Definition of heavy for English Language Learners

  • : in a heavy way


heavy

noun

Definition of heavy for English Language Learners

  • : a bad person in a movie or play

  • : a person or thing that is serious, important, or powerful


HEAVY Defined for Kids

heavy

play
adjective \ ˈhe-vē \

Definition of heavy for Students

heavier; heaviest
1 :having great weight
2 :unusually great in amount, force, or effect
  • heavy rain
  • heavy sleep
  • heavy damage
3 :made with thick strong material
  • heavy rope
4 :dense and thick
  • heavy eyebrows
5 :hard to put up with
  • a heavy responsibility
6 :sad or troubled
  • It's with a heavy heart that I leave you.
7 :having little strength or energy
  • My legs grew heavier with every step.

heaviness

noun


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up heavy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

alert quickness of mind or body

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Merriam-Webster's New Words Quiz—Fall 2017 Edition!

  • young-plant-shoots
  • Which of the following is a new sense of the word bunny?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!