\ ˈhərt \
hurt; hurting

Definition of hurt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to inflict with physical pain : wound He hurt his back while moving some boxes. was seriously hurt in a car accident You're hurting my arm!
b : to do substantial or material harm to : damage the dry summer has hurt the land
2a : to cause emotional pain or anguish to : offend never meant to hurt you got her feelings hurt
b : to be detrimental to : hamper charges of graft hurt his chances of being elected

intransitive verb

1a : to suffer pain or grief He says his tooth hurts. has been hurting ever since learning of her friend's betrayal
b : to be in need usually used with for hurting for money
2 : to cause damage or distress hit where it hurts



Definition of hurt (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a cause of injury or damage : blow this tower of granite, weathering the hurts of so many ages— R. W. Emerson
2a : a bodily injury or wound
b : mental or emotional distress or anguish : suffering getting past the hurt of a bitter divorce
3 : wrong, harm subordinating cosmic to moral considerations, to the hurt of both— M. R. Cohen

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Other Words from hurt


hurt adjective
hurter noun

Choose the Right Synonym for hurt


injure, harm, hurt, damage, impair, mar mean to affect injuriously. injure implies the inflicting of anything detrimental to one's looks, comfort, health, or success. badly injured in an accident harm often stresses the inflicting of pain, suffering, or loss. careful not to harm the animals hurt implies inflicting a wound to the body or to the feelings. hurt by their callous remarks damage suggests injury that lowers value or impairs usefulness. a table damaged in shipping impair suggests a making less complete or efficient by deterioration or diminution. years of smoking had impaired his health mar applies to injury that spoils perfection (as of a surface) or causes disfigurement. the text is marred by many typos

Examples of hurt in a Sentence


Be careful with that knife or you could hurt yourself. Ouch! You're hurting my arm! She was badly hurt in a car accident. My tooth still hurts me. When I woke up this morning I hurt all over. Their lack of interest in her work hurt her deeply. You're only hurting yourself by holding a grudge against them. It hurt me to see her go. The lack of rain has hurt the corn crop. If we lose this game it will seriously hurt our chances of making the play-offs.


Her sympathy eased the hurt he felt after his dog's death. They felt a great hurt after their bitter divorce. She tried to put past hurts behind her.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The pilot and navigator confirm to one another through shouting that neither is hurt. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Cockpit Canopy Falls Off F-15 at 30,000 Feet, Pilot Lands the Damn Jet Anyway," 7 Jan. 2019 When Brianna has a nightmare, Lizzie comforts her by saying the man cannot hurt her now. Outlander Fan, Marie Claire, "5 Biggest Takeaways From 'Outlander' Season 4 Episode 10," 7 Jan. 2019 Of course, most customers could probably care less about licensing term negotiations, so the people paying for the content are the ones who are most hurt by the dispute. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "Dish customers lose HBO in ongoing distribution dispute," 1 Nov. 2018 That way, if someone gets hurt on the job, the company's insurance covers the medical bills. Brett Martin, House Beautiful, "Here Are The 8 Interview Questions To Ask A Potential Contractor," 26 Dec. 2018 Who knows if this is true, but a little Febreze never hurt anyone. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "11 Meghan Markle Headlines From This Year That Are So Ridiculous, You Have to Laugh," 25 Dec. 2018 Just remember— negative comments can hurt anybody’s feelings. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Selena Gomez Wore a Cozy Cream-Colored Cardigan," 24 Dec. 2018 Qn: Bradley McDougald’s injury really hurt the Hawks in the SF game. Seattle Times Sports Staff, The Seattle Times, "Live chat rewind | Why didn’t the Seahawks cut their kicker? How to beat KC?," 18 Dec. 2018 Rather than knocking a drone out of the sky, potentially hurting people below, law enforcement can find the operator and reprimand him or her accordingly. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "Are Hobby Drones Dead?," 7 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Of course, that understanding didn’t make the hurt any less real. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "Michelle Obama on Facing Criticism, Life After the White House, and Advice for Meghan Markle," 3 Dec. 2018 Taylor hasn’t heard about anyone getting hurt, however. Rachel D'oro, The Seattle Times, "Alaska selfie-takers told to stay off quake-buckled road," 5 Dec. 2018 The first half was marred by injuries to Mohamed Salah and Dani Carvajal, with both starters forced off hurt in developments that could have massive World Cup implications. Avi Creditor,, "WATCH: Gareth Bale's Bicycle Kick, Heroics Give Real Madrid 3rd Straight UCL Title," 26 May 2018 Cale Gregory also returns to the line after getting hurt in the the second game and missing the rest of the 2017 season. Richard Obert, azcentral, "Hope permeates Notre Dame Prep spring football practice," 9 May 2018 On Monday, July 2, the focus will be on exploring resentment through personal writing, using short writing exercises to identify resentments, explore your role in them and address them, releasing hurt and anger. Carole Goldberg,, "Write Stuff: Deadline Extended For Twain House's Royal Nonesuch Humor Writing Contest," 27 June 2018 Her inspirational storyline that, thankfully, avoids fat-shaming has shown fans that all people are capable of love, pain, hurt, and happiness., "Chrissy Metz Shares Devastating Stories About Her Abusive Stepfather," 21 Mar. 2018 Farmiga is more interesting, punctuating Emma's isolation with raw moments of anger and hurt. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, "'What They Had': Film Review | Sundance 2018," 23 Jan. 2018 But Booker, one of two black senators, said Trump’s critics must mobilize against his policies or risk being consumed by their own hurt and anger. Errin Haines Whack, The Seattle Times, "Racial firestorm surrounds Trump at MLK holiday," 15 Jan. 2018

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hurt

Verb and Noun

Middle English, probably from Anglo-French hurter to strike, prick, collide with, probably of Germanic origin; akin to Old Norse hrūtr male sheep

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Learn More about hurt

Dictionary Entries near hurt






hurt feelings

hurt for

Statistics for hurt

Last Updated

16 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hurt

The first known use of hurt was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for hurt



English Language Learners Definition of hurt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause pain or injury to (yourself, someone else, or a part of your body)

: to be a source or cause of pain

: to feel physical pain



English Language Learners Definition of hurt (Entry 2 of 2)

: mental or emotional pain


\ ˈhərt \
hurt; hurting

Kids Definition of hurt

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to feel or cause pain My feet hurt. These shoes hurt.
2 : to do harm to : damage The drought has hurt crops.
3 : to cause to be sad “I am sure none of my boys and girls in Room 13 would purposely … hurt anyone's feelings …”— Eleanor Estes, The Hundred Dresses
4 : to make poorer or more difficult The fumble hurt our team's chance of winning.



Kids Definition of hurt (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : an injury or wound to the body
2 : mental or emotional pain



Kids Definition of hurt (Entry 3 of 3)

: physically or emotionally injured a hurt toe hurt feelings

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More from Merriam-Webster on hurt

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hurt

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hurt

Spanish Central: Translation of hurt

Nglish: Translation of hurt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hurt for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hurt

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