\ ˈhərt How to pronounce hurt (audio) \
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 boat driver and two other divers on board were not hurt in the incident. Fox News, "Illinois husband, wife die while diving in Lake Michigan off Wisconsin, officials say," 1 July 2019 Then Fowler got hurt — an oblique muscle strain on his right side. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "Rickie Fowler, Make-A-Wish and the walk of a lifetime at Detroit Golf Club," 30 June 2019 Anderson was clearly hurt, although the White Sox would say later, after X-rays, that Anderson was out with a sprain. Doug Alden,, "Bogaerts homers as Red Sox beat White Sox in rain," 26 June 2019 Attorneys general for most states wrote in a pair of letters to Polster that such an arrangement could hurt their ability to reach a national settlement. STAT, "Pharmalittle: Judge appears to back push for opioid settlement; the CRISPR patent fight lives on," 26 June 2019 Apple is urging the administration to halt its plans, which the company says would hurt its sales. Greg Linden, The Conversation, "The guts of an Apple iPhone show exactly what Trump gets wrong about trade," 25 June 2019 So far, Candolin notes, the sloppier mating caused by murky waters isn't hurting stickleback populations in the Baltic. Elizabeth Preston, Science | AAAS, "A growing sensory smog threatens the ability of fish to communicate, navigate, and survive," 20 June 2019 But the agency’s shortcomings serving Spanish-speaking families has contributed to failures to investigate cases in which children ended up being hurt and even killed, according to records. Melissa Sanchez, ProPublica, "For generations, Illinois’ child welfare agency has failed to adequately serve Spanish-speaking families with children in its care.," 20 June 2019 King was badly hurt in the accident and transported first to Northern Cumberland Hospital, then flown by helicopter to Central Maine Hospital. Clark Collis,, "Stephen King says every day is 'a gift' 20 years after nearly losing leg in road accident," 19 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

From a hurt that afflicts countless others in our city, people who then too often hurt someone else. Roy S. Johnson |,, "Johnson: Marshea Jones should not be prosecuted; she should be helped," 30 June 2019 Units are investigating an armed robbery at 389 Main St. One blank round fired inside business No one hurt. Emily Sweeney,, "Watertown police investigating armed robbery," 27 June 2019 The people who the police hurt are young people and students. Washington Post, "Hong Kong protesters surround police headquarters, demand extradition bill be truly scrapped," 22 June 2019 Not real wins, obviously, as this year has seen a gaping deficit of those, but rather, little figurative wins — the kind that act as salves to heal the sharp, painful hurt that losing brings., "Seattle Mariners’ defensive play of the year has already happened: Commentary," 20 June 2019 Sure, there is playing hurt and being injured, as Riley’s anecdote serves. Dave Hyde,, "Hyde: Kevin Durant’s injury is all pain, no gain for anyone | Commentary," 11 June 2019 In a world full of cynicism, criticism and hurt, love is what will fuel them to do great things. Justin Ricklefs, Redbook, "9 Things Fatherhood Has Taught Me About Being a Man," 10 June 2019 With Whitley hurt and starter Corbin Martin sent down because of his poor performance in the majors this season, pitching depth in the farm system is being tested. Hunter Atkins, Houston Chronicle, "Astros prospect Forrest Whitley prepares to resume throwing," 7 June 2019 Defenders DeAndre Yedlin and John Brooks are hurt and missing the tournament, and four players have injury concerns. Ronald Blum, The Denver Post, "USMNT Gold Cup roster announced, Rapids’ Jonathan Lewis makes the cut," 6 June 2019

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

3 Jul 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 How to pronounce hurt (audio) \
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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