noun (1)
pur·​ple·​heart | \ ˈpər-pəl-ˌhärt How to pronounce purpleheart (audio) \

Definition of purpleheart

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a strong durable purplish wood that is obtained from various leguminous trees (genus Peltogyne) of Central and South America also : a tree producing such wood

Purple Heart

noun (2)

Definition of Purple Heart (Entry 2 of 2)

: a U.S. military decoration awarded to any member of the armed forces wounded or killed in action

Examples of purpleheart in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Some of my favorite get-loud strikers include purpleheart, hickory, and birch. Jace Bauserman, Outdoor Life, 4 Mar. 2020 Neil Sperry Mixed perennials were chosen for seasons of color (purpleheart, yarrow, cannas and others). Neil Sperry, star-telegram, 1 May 2017

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

First Known Use of purpleheart

Noun (1)

1738, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1932, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for purpleheart

Time Traveler

The first known use of purpleheart was in 1738

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Dictionary Entries Near purpleheart

purple haw


Purple Heart

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Cite this Entry

“Purpleheart.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/purpleheart. Accessed 31 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for purpleheart

Purple Heart


English Language Learners Definition of Purple Heart

: a U.S. military award that is given to a soldier who is wounded or killed in battle


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