\ ˈhek How to pronounce heck (audio) \

Definition of heck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : hell sense 2 all heck breaks loose
2 : hell sense 4 a heck of a lot of money


biographical name
\ ˈhek How to pronounce Heck (audio) \

Definition of Heck (Entry 2 of 2)

Richard F(red) 1931–2015 American chemist

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of heck in a Sentence


it looks like heck in that boy's bedroom

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Such as, how the heck did director Jon Favreau do that? Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "How the heck did Disney make 'The Lion King' feel so real? Your burning questions, answered," 18 July 2019 Now Tartakovsky's back with another great animated leap forward, a decidedly violent show about the toughest caveman on prehistoric Earth and his best friend, a dinosaur, killing the heck out of even tougher, evil dinosaurs. Wired, "The 11 Best New TV Shows Coming This Fall," 16 Sep. 2019 What the heck is going on in this town? -- Andrew, Coral Gables. Ira Winderman, sun-sentinel.com, "ASK IRA: Is Dolphins’ Minkah Fitzpatrick a case of Hassan Whiteside 2.0?," 15 Sep. 2019 What the heck is going on in Italian politics, briefly explained Matteo Salvini is pretty much what’s going on in Italian politics. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Italy’s prime minister just resigned. What the heck comes next?," 21 Aug. 2019 ZeroHero, as it’s called, would be a section—heck, maybe a whole aisle—of big-box stores devoted to zero-waste products. Rowan Jacobsen, Outside Online, "An Ocean Plastics Field Trip for Corporate Executives," 8 Aug. 2019 The football program can’t play out its final AAC season with everyone wondering what the heck is going to happen in 2020. Mike Anthony, courant.com, "Mike Anthony: It’s time for David Benedict to handle the football problems that UConn’s Big East move creates," 24 June 2019 Next is the opening kickoff, with IU players running onto the field and waving to the crowd to fire them up … and being told by Ball State’s players to get the heck off our side of the field. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Rocket-armed Michael Penix might just lift IU football to new heights," 31 Aug. 2019 And when the heck did business showers become a thing? Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, "Son left home, but left his nude photos behind," 29 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of heck


1887, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for heck



Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about heck

Dictionary Entries near heck








Statistics for heck

Last Updated

3 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for heck

The first known use of heck was in 1887

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for heck



English Language Learners Definition of heck

informal used as a more polite form of hell

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on heck

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with heck

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for heck

Spanish Central: Translation of heck

Nglish: Translation of heck for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of heck for Arabic Speakers

Comments on heck

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


to wander slowly or to speak indistinctly

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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