a rapid beat or pulsation of the heart.
a passionate or sentimental emotion.

Origin of heartthrob

First recorded in 1840–50; heart + throb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for heart-throb

Contemporary Examples of heart-throb

Historical Examples of heart-throb

  • In these great centers one can feel the heart-throb of civilization.

  • "Pray do not be disturbed," Faxon returned with a heart-throb of gladness.

    The Heatherford Fortune

    Mrs. Georgie Sheldon

  • It gratified her woman's vanity; it did not stir her to one heart-throb.

    The Purple Heights

    Marie Conway Oemler

  • But my heart-throb of childish delight was checked, mid-beat.

    Vanguards of the Plains

    Margaret McCarter

  • As the heart-throb slowed, his muscles slackened and obeyed his will, but yet he felt that something was amiss.

British Dictionary definitions for heart-throb



an object of infatuation
a heart beat
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 heart-throb

also heartthrob, 1839, from heart (n.) + throb (n.). Of persons who inspire romantic feelings, from 1928.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper