\ ˈhī How to pronounce hie (audio) \
hied; hying or hieing

Definition of hie

intransitive verb

: to go quickly : hasten thither we advise you to hieNew Yorker

transitive verb

: to cause (oneself) to go quickly hie you to church— William Shakespeare

Hie Isn't a Word of the Past

Hie has been part of English since the 12th century, and it stems from the even hoarier hīgian, an Old English word meaning "to strive" or "to hasten." Hie enjoyed a high popularity period from the 16th to the 19th centuries, and you're sure to encounter it in the literature of those times—writers from Shakespeare to Twain penned it into their prose. But don't get the idea that hie is just a word of the past; it regularly pops up in current publications as well—often, though not always, in contexts in which the author is wanting to approximate an old-timey way of communicating.

Examples of hie in a Sentence

we had best hie home before the snow gets worse
Recent Examples on the Web Such shows—in major museums in major cities—are perfect for the summer, when much of the art world has hied off to beaches and country houses, but when regular-folk tourists arrive in droves. Peter Plagens, WSJ, 8 June 2019

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

First Known Use of hie

12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for hie

Middle English, from Old English hīgian to strive, hasten

Learn More About hie

Time Traveler for hie

Time Traveler

The first known use of hie was in the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast About hie

Dictionary Entries Near hie




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for hie

Cite this Entry

“Hie.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hie. Accessed 24 Sep. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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