\ ˈhärd-ˈkȯr How to pronounce hard-core (audio) \

Definition of hard-core

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or being part of a hard core hard-core poverty the hard-core unemployed
b : confirmed, die-hard hard-core rock fans a hard-core liberal
2 of pornography : containing explicit descriptions of sex acts or scenes of actual sex acts — compare soft-core
3 : characterized by or being the purest or most basic form of something : fundamental a room gussied up in hard-core French provincial style— John Canaday

hard core


Definition of hard core (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a central or fundamental and usually enduring group or part: such as
a : a relatively small enduring core of society marked by apparent resistance to change or inability to escape a persistent wretched condition (such as poverty or chronic unemployment)
b : a militant or fiercely loyal faction
2 usually hardcore \ ˈhärd-​ˌkȯr How to pronounce hard core (audio) \, chiefly British : hard material in pieces (such as broken bricks or stone) used as a bottom (as in making roads and in foundations)

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Examples of hard-core in a Sentence

Noun He knows that he can count on the support of a hard core of party loyalists.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Mobile marketers widely believe Google will introduce something similar, if not quite as hard core, in future version of Android. John Koetsier, Forbes, 13 Oct. 2021 Pick raspberries when the fruit is firm but soft, deeply colored, and easily slides off the hard core. Melinda Myers, Star Tribune, 30 July 2021 For the hard core hikers, anything under 10 miles in rugged conditions might not be considered a real hike. Field & Stream, 9 Mar. 2021 The data show mixed results for the policy; countries with soft measures like transparency and disclosure get better results than those with hard core price controls as proposed by California. Roslyn Layton, Forbes, 25 Feb. 2021 Experts on extremism say that the hard core of the far right is apt to become more extreme, and that there’s a high risk of political violence in the months to come. Laura Blasey, Los Angeles Times, 27 Jan. 2021 Trump can get part of the way by rallying his hard core of white working-class voters and notching gains with Latinos impressed by his handling of the economy and tough stance on Cuba. Shawn Tully, Fortune, 1 Nov. 2020 Many are peaceful, but a hard core have repeatedly attacked police and burned buildings. Star Tribune, 4 Sep. 2020 Many cameras can be ruggedized with the addition of a case, but the GoPro is hard core on its own. Gabrielle Hondorp, Popular Mechanics, 25 June 2020

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


1934, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1841, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for hard-core

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The first known use of hard-core was in 1841

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Dictionary Entries Near hard-core

hard core


hard court

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Cite this Entry

“Hard-core.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hard-core. Accessed 17 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for hard-core



English Language Learners Definition of hard-core

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: very active and enthusiastic
: showing or describing sex acts very openly

hard core


English Language Learners Definition of hard core (Entry 2 of 2)

: a small number of very active and enthusiastic members of a group : the most devoted and active members of a group


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