- causing physical pain or distress: treatment for an aching back.
- full of or precipitating nostalgia, grief, loneliness, etc.
Origin of aching
- to have or suffer a continuous, dull pain: His whole body ached.
- to feel great sympathy, pity, or the like: Her heart ached for the starving animals.
- to feel eager; yearn; long: She ached to be the champion. He's just aching to get even.
- a continuous, dull pain (in contrast to a sharp, sudden, or sporadic pain).
Origin of ache
SynonymsSee more synonyms for ache on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for aching
Liberals are aching to see a Democratic president really tackle these issues in an aggressive way.What Obama Can Learn From Elizabeth Warren
December 17, 2013
I was itchy from the bugs, aching everywhere, blistery, and wet.An Obsessive’s Search for a Lost Jungle City
Christopher S. Stewart
December 30, 2012
She was left with an aching desire to turn back time and stop the progression of that clock.The Professor and the Doomsday Clock: ‘A Confederacy of Dunces’ & Signs of John Kennedy Toole’s Suicide
December 17, 2012
The organization has been aching to move against the judiciary for some time, he said.Deaths of Gaber Salah, Islam Masoud Signal Egypt’s Dangerous Divisions
November 27, 2012
These spectacles are planned with aching attention to detail.Disorder of the Garter
June 14, 2012
Aren't you just aching for a wee house of your own, the same way that I am!The Foolish Lovers
St. John G. Ervine
I went with my mind an aching void, and my heart a cold boiled potato.It Happened in Egypt
C. N. Williamson
The other masters lived at a distance, and Ketch's old legs were aching.
She thanked him, but it was with an aching heart, for Constance could not feel this hope.
Before morning I was aching all over: I had rheumatic fever.Wilfrid Cumbermede
- to feel, suffer, or be the source of a continuous dull pain
- to suffer mental anguish
- a continuous dull pain
Word Origin and History for aching
Old English acan "to ache, suffer pain," from Proto-Germanic *akanan, perhaps from a PIE root *ag-es- "fault, guilt," represented also in Sanskrit and Greek, perhaps imitative of groaning. The verb was pronounced "ake," the noun "ache" (as in speak/speech) but while the noun changed pronunciation to conform to the verb, the spelling of both was changed to ache c.1700 on a false assumption of a Greek origin (specifically Greek akhos "pain, distress," which is rather a distant relation of awe (n.)). Related: Ached; aching.
early 15c., æche, from Old English æce, from Proto-Germanic *akiz, from same source as ache (v.).
- A dull persistent pain.
- To suffer a dull, sustained pain.