he·​ro·​ic | \ hi-ˈrō-ik also her-ˈō- or hē-ˈrō- How to pronounce heroic (audio) \
variants: or less commonly heroical \ hi-​ˈrō-​i-​kəl How to pronounce heroic (audio) \

Definition of heroic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to courageous people or the mythological or legendary figures of antiquity : of, relating to, resembling, or suggesting heroes especially of antiquity heroic legends the heroic age
2a : exhibiting or marked by courage and daring It was a heroic decision.
b : supremely noble or self-sacrificing a heroic gesture received medals for their heroic actions
3a : of impressive size, power, extent, or effect a heroic voice
b(1) : of great intensity : extreme heroic effort
(2) : of a kind that is likely only to be undertaken to save a life heroic surgery
4 : of, relating to, or constituting drama written during the Restoration in heroic couplets and concerned with a conflict between love and honor



Definition of heroic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a verse or poem written during the Restoration using rhyming couplets in iambic pentameter and concerned with a conflict between love and honor : a heroic verse or poem
2 heroics plural
a : flamboyantly boastful language or action avoids heroics in his writing
b : courageous, noble, or self-sacrificing action or behavior : heroic action or behavior the heroics of the civil rights movement
c : determined effort especially in the face of difficulty

Other Words from heroic


heroically \ hi-​ˈrō-​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce heroic (audio) \ adverb

Examples of heroic in a Sentence

Adjective It was heroic of those women to fight for the right to vote. The soldiers received medals for their heroic actions. Despite heroic efforts to save the business, it ultimately went bankrupt. a political battle of heroic proportions
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective There is no other way to put it — his actions were heroic. Kolbie Peterson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 9 Dec. 2021 For its time, the effort was heroic, even though the animal has only 302 neurons in its brain. Quanta Magazine, 6 Dec. 2021 Or will the message be that vigilantism against liberal enemies is heroic? Brian Stelter, CNN, 20 Nov. 2021 It could all be boiled down to a few key points: Eros is heroic and a far cry from his villainous brother. Richard Newby, Vulture, 8 Nov. 2021 Ajak, a mother’s love, self-sacrifice — things like that are heroic. Los Angeles Times, 5 Nov. 2021 In a few short decades, the Marvel Universe (in all its corporate manifestations) has rewired how millions, perhaps even billions, of people imagine what is possible, what is heroic, what is good. New York Times, 12 Oct. 2021 The family later learned that their son's heroic actions were all caught on camera, thanks to a series of cameras Tracey had set up, according to WTVF. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, 6 Jan. 2022 Many of our health-care workers have been pushed to the edge of physical and mental endurance in their heroic efforts to care for COVID patients. Gilbert Garcia, San Antonio Express-News, 25 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The most super heroic of the bunch, Kick-Ass, earned just $98 million in 2010. Scott Mendelson, Forbes, 3 June 2021 Watson, meanwhile, threw for 388 yards and two touchdowns while running for another, but not even his heroics could bail out the Texans (11-7) after they were outscored, 28-0, in the second quarter. Dave Skretta, BostonGlobe.com, 12 Jan. 2020 For all their athletic exploits to date, none compare with their off-field heroics. John Shea, SFChronicle.com, 28 Feb. 2020 Watson, meanwhile, threw for 388 yards and two touchdowns while running for another, but not even his heroics could bail out the Texans (11-7) after they were outscored 28-0 in the second quarter. oregonlive, 12 Jan. 2020 Jewell did not know it then, but the government already had its doubts about his heroics. Adam Carlson, PEOPLE.com, 1 Jan. 2020 And, on Sunday, his heroics once again buoyed the Broncos after Oakland cut its deficit to one point late in the fourth quarter with Renfrow’s short touchdown catch. Kyle Fredrickson, The Denver Post, 29 Dec. 2019 The necessary heroics on that side of the ball just don’t come with the level of frequency that championship contenders produce. Mike Jones, USA TODAY, 15 Dec. 2019 His heroics wouldn’t have been possible without quarterback Tanner Morgan finding Chris Autman-Bell in the corner of the end zone for a 20-yard touchdown on fourth and 13 with 46 seconds left to force OT. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, 6 Dec. 2019

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

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First Known Use of heroic


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1573, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for heroic

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The first known use of heroic was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

22 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Heroic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heroic. Accessed 26 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for heroic



English Language Learners Definition of heroic

: of or relating to heroes
: having or showing great courage
: very large or great in size, amount, etc.


he·​ro·​ic | \ hi-ˈrō-ik How to pronounce heroic (audio) \

Kids Definition of heroic

1 : of or relating to heroism or heroes heroic tales
2 : courageous, daring a heroic rescue

Other Words from heroic

heroically \ -​i-​kə-​lē \ adverb


he·​ro·​ic | \ hi-ˈrō-ik also her-ˈō- or hē-ˈrō- \

Medical Definition of heroic

1 : of a kind that is likely to be undertaken only to save life heroic surgery heroic treatment
2 : having a pronounced effect used chiefly of medicaments or dosage heroic doses a heroic drug

More from Merriam-Webster on heroic

Nglish: Translation of heroic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of heroic for Arabic Speakers


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