[ hahr-tid ]
/ ˈhɑr tɪd /
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having a specified feeling, mood, personality trait, or kind of heart (now used only in combination): hardhearted;sad-hearted.
fixed or present in the heart.
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Origin of hearted

First recorded in 1175–1225, hearted is from the Middle English word iherted.See y-, heart, -ed3


heart·ed·ly, adverbheart·ed·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What does hearted mean?

Hearted is used in compound words to mean “having a specific type of personality or trait.” The word that precedes hearted indicates the type of personality or trait, as in hardhearted or warm-hearted.

Hearted can also be used by itself to mean “present in the heart,” but this usage is very rare.

Example: Tim’s so kindhearted that he gave his coat to a homeless man on his walk home today.

Where does hearted come from?

Hearted is an old word, originating in Middle English and first recorded in English around 1200. It has had several meanings throughout the years. Obsolete meanings include “wise” (1400s), “courageous” (1500s), and “heart-shaped” (1700s–1800s). A fairly rare modern sense of hearted is used to describe vegetables that have an inner compact part called a heart, such as cabbage.

Most commonly, however, hearted refers to a human heart. In English, heart is used not only to refer to the literal organ but also for a wide range of figurative meanings. Usually, these refer to the emotional center of a person or to a person’s overall personality. It’s this meaning of hearted that can be paired with all sorts of adjectives, both positive or negative, to produce adjectives that describe a person or an action. A person can be cold-hearted (cruel) or warm-hearted (kind), tender-hearted (compassionate) or hardhearted (unfeeling or unmerciful), lighthearted (carefree) or sad-hearted (sorrowful). (As you can see, use of a hyphen varies.)

You can also use these derived adjectives to create adverbs by adding -ly, as in She told me cold-heartedly that she never wanted to see me again.

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What are some other forms of hearted?

  • heartedly (adverb)

What are some synonyms for hearted?

What are some words that share a root or word element with hearted?


What are some words that often get used in discussing hearted?


How is hearted used in real life?

When used to describe a personality or action, hearted is always used in combination with another word. In all cases, it refers to the popular notion of the heart as the center of human emotion.



Try using hearted!

Is hearted used correctly in the following sentence?

We are looking for a teacher who is very kindness-hearted.

How to use hearted in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for hearted


having a heart or disposition as specifiedgood-hearted; cold-hearted; great-hearted; heavy-hearted
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