• synonyms


  1. emotional pain or distress; sorrow; grief; anguish.
Show More

Origin of heartache

before 1000; Middle English hert ache, Old English heort ece; see heart, ache
Related formsheart·ach·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for heartaching

Historical Examples of heartaching

  • At the end of that time I shall have finished my reading—yes, we will do it, and this heartaching will be over.

    The Return of the Native

    Thomas Hardy

British Dictionary definitions for heartaching


  1. intense anguish or mental suffering
Show More
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 heartaching



Old English heortece, in the sense of a physical pain; c.1600 in sense of "anguish of mind;" from heart + ache. Old English did, however, have heartsarnes "grief," literally "heart-soreness."

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper