hero

noun (1)
he·​ro | \ˈhir-(ˌ)ō \
plural heroes

Definition of hero 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a mythological or legendary figure often of divine descent endowed with great strength or ability

b : an illustrious warrior

c : a person admired for achievements and noble qualities

d : one who shows great courage

2a : the principal character in a literary or dramatic work used specifically of a principal male character especially when contrasted with heroine A special feature was the cliff-hanger ending when hero, heroine, or both found themselves confronting a violent demise …— Ira Konigsberg now also used of a principal character who is female … action movies with female heroes are emerging more frequently, and with increasing quality.— William Bibbiani

b : the central figure in an event, period, or movement

3 plural usually heros : submarine sense 2

4 : an object of extreme admiration and devotion : idol

Hero

noun (2)

Definition of Hero (Entry 2 of 3)

: a legendary priestess of Aphrodite loved by Leander

Hero

biographical name
He·​ro | \ˈhē-(ˌ)rō, ˈhir-(ˌ)ō\
variants: or Heron \ ˈhē-​ˌrän \

Definition of Hero (Entry 3 of 3)

1st century a.d. Greek scientist

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Synonyms for hero

Synonyms: Noun (1)

god, icon (also ikon), idol

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Examples of hero in a Sentence

Noun (1)

A motto of his hero, Thomas Edison, is inscribed on a favorite sweatshirt : "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk." — Britt Robson, Mother Jones, May/June 2008 Greater authors—Arthur Conan Doyle most notably—have been in the same dilemma when seeking closure. And, like Conan Doyle, Rowling has won imperishable renown for giving us an identifiable hero and a fine caricature of a villain, and for making a fictional bit of King's Cross station as luminous as a certain address on nearby Baker Street. — Christopher Hitchens, New York Times Book Review, 12 Aug. 2007 Here's a novel by a decorated war hero with a fictional Middle Eastern desert war at its core. It pits an American-led coalition against a potentially lethal enemy … — Lorenzo Carcaterra, People, 3 June 1991 Other physicists, long wedded to the notion that nothing can escape from a black hole, have generally come to accept that discovery. And the stuff emitted from little black holes (and big ones too, but far more slowly) is now called Hawking radiation. "In general relativity and early cosmology, Hawking is the hero," says Rocky Kolb, a physicist at Fermilab in Illinois. — Leon Jaroff, Time, 8 Feb. 1988 He returned from the war a national hero. the hero of a rescue She was a hero for standing up to the government. His father has always been his hero. He has always been a hero to his son.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And the game’s ultimate heroes were the French defending duo of Samuel Umtiti, born in the Cameroonian capital Yaounde, and Raphaël Varane, whose father hails from the Caribbean isle of Martinique. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "The World Cup is a victory for the immigrant dream," 12 July 2018 Honor the unsung heroes who make a difference every day. Nyssa Kruse, courant.com, "CRT Volunteer George Brice Helps The Hungry, 'Rain Or Shine'," 12 July 2018 The flawed heroes of each novella are played by and against him. Steve Israel, chicagotribune.com, "What's the greatest book about politics? Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich and others weigh in.," 12 July 2018 This one is too important 2 let others dictate who the real heroes are. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, ""Crazy Rich Asians" Director Jon M. Chu Is Reportedly Making His Own Thai Cave Rescue Film," 12 July 2018 On Saturday there were large sections of empty seats at Centre Court, normally a hot ticket, and Bobby Charlton, hero of that 1966 team, disappeared from the royal box for a chunk of time while England was building its two-goal lead. Sam Farmer, latimes.com, "England riding high on World Cup success as Wimbledon also creates a racket," 11 July 2018 The section on the tablet comes from the Odyssey’s 14th rhapsody, which depicts the hero Odysseus’ adventures after the fall of Troy. Laignee Barron, Time, "Archaeologists Find What Could be the Oldest Written Record of Homer's 'Odyssey'," 11 July 2018 And Croatian semifinal hero Mandžukić (as well as reserve forward Marko Pjaca) is at Juventus with France’s Matuidi. Brian Straus, SI.com, "France vs. Croatia: A First Look at Their World Cup Final Matchup," 11 July 2018 Nick Spencer ushers in a new era for Spidey that takes the web-head back to basics, while all-new Venom writer Donny Cates lays out what's in store for the symbiotic hero in both the past and present in his definitive take on the character. Phillip Molnar, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Comic-Con 2018: Here's your Friday schedule," 6 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hero.' 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 hero

Noun (1)

circa 1522, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hero

Noun (1)

Latin heros, from Greek hērōs

Noun (2)

Latin, from Greek Hērō

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Learn More about hero

Dictionary Entries near hero

Herning

hernio-

Hero

hero

Herod

Herod Antipas

Herodian

Statistics for hero

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hero

The first known use of hero was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for hero

hero

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hero

: a person who is admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities

: a person who is greatly admired

: the chief male character in a story, play, movie, etc.

hero

noun
he·​ro | \ˈhir-ō, ˈhē-rō\
plural heroes

Kids Definition of hero

1 : a person admired for great deeds or fine qualities We study heroes of our nation's history.

2 : a person who shows great courage The firefighters were heroes.

3 : the chief male character in a story, play, or poem

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Comments on hero

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