adjective, fool·har·di·er, fool·har·di·est.

recklessly or thoughtlessly bold; foolishly rash or venturesome.

Origin of foolhardy

1175–1225; Middle English folhardy < Old French fol hardi. See fool1, hardy1
Related formsfool·har·di·ly, adverbfool·har·di·ness, noun

Synonyms for foolhardy Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for foolhardiness

Contemporary Examples of foolhardiness

Historical Examples of foolhardiness

  • Better as it is: over-caution is as great an error as foolhardiness.

    Roland Cashel

    Charles James Lever

  • On the top of a hill near by Peter bemoaned his losses and, it is said, his foolhardiness.

    Peter the Hermit

    Daniel A. Goodsell

  • How many lives are lost through ignorance and foolhardiness!

    Hunter's Marjory

    Margaret Bruce Clarke

  • He said he saw nothing in it but foolhardiness and vain-glory.


    Juliana Horatio Ewing

  • To do these things without sufficient reason is foolhardiness.

    Practical Ethics

    William DeWitt Hyde

British Dictionary definitions for foolhardiness


adjective -hardier or -hardiest

heedlessly rash or adventurous
Derived Formsfoolhardily, adverbfoolhardiness, noun

Word Origin for foolhardy

C13: from Old French fol hardi, from fol foolish + hardi bold
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for foolhardiness



early 13c., from fool (n.) + Middle English hardi "bold;" hence "foolishly brave" (see hardy). Cf. Old French fol hardi.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper