or hard·core

[hahrd-kawr, -kohr]
See more synonyms for hard-core on Thesaurus.com
  1. unswervingly committed; uncompromising; dedicated: a hard-core segregationist.
  2. relating to or containing sexually arousing depictions that are very graphic or explicit: hard-core pornography.Compare soft-core.
  3. being so without apparent change or remedy; chronic: hard-core inflation; hard-core unemployment.
  4. very intense or extreme: hard-core workouts at the gym.
  5. Usually hard·core. noting or relating to the music genre hardcore, or the subculture, clothing style, etc., associated with it: hardcore t-shirts and jeans.
  6. noting or relating to video games that can only be mastered with advanced skill and are played in longer sessions, or noting a player of such games: hard-core gaming.Compare casual(def 8).

Origin of hard-core

First recorded in 1950–55

hard core

  1. the permanent, dedicated, and completely faithful nucleus of a group or movement, as of a political party.
  2. an unyielding or intransigent element in a social or organizational structure, as that part of a group consisting of longtime adherents or those resistant to change.
  3. those whose condition seems to be without hope of remedy or change.
  4. Usually hard·core. a form of punk rock or other nonmainstream popular music played in an intense, harsh, and fast style with more emphasis on rhythm than on melody.

Origin of hard core

First recorded in 1935–40
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for hardcore

Contemporary Examples of hardcore

Historical Examples of hardcore

  • After me, she was hands-down the most hardcore player in our group.

    Little Brother

    Cory Doctorow

British Dictionary definitions for hardcore


  1. a style of rock music characterized by short fast numbers with minimal melody and aggressive delivery
  2. a type of dance music with a very fast beat

hard core

  1. the members of a group or movement who form an intransigent nucleus resisting change
  2. material, such as broken bricks, stones, etc, used to form a foundation for a road, paving, building, etc
adjective hard-core
  1. (of pornography) describing or depicting sexual acts in explicit detail
  2. extremely committed or fanaticala hard-core Communist
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 hardcore

also hard-core; 1936 (n.); 1951 (adj.); from hard + core. Original use seems to be among economists and sociologists. Extension to pornography is attested by 1966. Also the name of a surfacing material.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper