- a person noted for courageous acts or nobility of character: He became a local hero when he saved the drowning child.
- a person who, in the opinion of others, has special achievements, abilities, or personal qualities and is regarded as a role model or ideal: My older sister is my hero. Entrepreneurs are our modern heroes.
- the principal male character in a story, play, film, etc.
- Classical Mythology.
- a being of godlike prowess and beneficence who often came to be honored as a divinity.
- (in the Homeric period) a warrior-chieftain of special strength, courage, or ability.
- (in later antiquity) an immortal being; demigod.
- hero sandwich.
- the bread or roll used in making a hero sandwich.
Origin of hero
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for heroes
Finally, we have a major film on civil rights in which African Americans are the heroes in their own story.Dr. King Goes to Hollywood: The Flawed History of ‘Selma’
January 2, 2015
Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Oskar Schindler—these names come readily to mind when we think of heroes of conscience.The Catholic Philosopher Who Took on Hitler
John Henry Crosby
December 26, 2014
Claret for boys, port for men, and brandy for heroes, according to Dr. Johnson, and Hitch went for the heroic.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days
December 13, 2014
No one wanted them to succeed, not the cops, the heroes, not the villains.Gail Simone’s Bisexual Catman and the ‘Secret Six’
December 6, 2014
We nerds, especially, with our inherent distrust of social situations, love to make “the press” the enemy of our heroes.I Blame People Who Blame the Media: Robert McCulloch’s Tone-Deaf Speech
November 25, 2014
They were the heroes of other lands; but have we not heroes also of our own?Explorations in Australia
The wisdom of our sages and blood of our heroes have been devoted to their attainment.
I have used the words "they" and "their" in speaking of these heroes.
Those who say that we are in a time when there are no heroes just don't know where to look.
All his other women are parts of her or reflections of her, as all his heroes are sides of Hamlet, or reflections of him.The Man Shakespeare
- a man distinguished by exceptional courage, nobility, fortitude, etc
- a man who is idealized for possessing superior qualities in any field
- classical myth a being of extraordinary strength and courage, often the offspring of a mortal and a god, who is celebrated for his exploits
- the principal male character in a novel, play, etc
- Greek myth a priestess of Aphrodite, who killed herself when her lover Leander drowned while swimming the Hellespont to visit her
- 1st century ad, Greek mathematician and inventor
Word Origin and History for heroes
1955, the New York term for a sandwich elsewhere called submarine, grinder, poor boy (New Orleans), or hoagie (Philadelphia); origin unknown, perhaps so called for its great size, or a folk etymology alteration of Greek gyro as a type of sandwich.
late 14c., "man of superhuman strength or physical courage," from Latin heros "hero," from Greek heros "demi-god" (a variant singular of which was heroe), originally "defender, protector," from PIE root *ser- "to watch over, protect" (cf. Latin servare "to save, deliver, preserve, protect;" see observe). Meaning "man who exhibits great bravery" in any course of action is from 1660s. Sense of "chief male character in a play, story, etc." first recorded 1690s. First record of hero-worship is from 1774.
- Greek mathematician who wrote on mechanics and invented many water-driven and steam-driven machines. He also developed a formula for determining the area of a triangle.