verb (used without object), hur·tled, hur·tling.

to rush violently; move with great speed: The car hurtled down the highway.
to move or go noisily or resoundingly, as with violent or rapid motion: The sound was deafening, as tons of snow hurtled down the mountain.
Archaic. to strike together or against something; collide.

verb (used with object), hur·tled, hur·tling.

to drive violently; fling; dash.
Archaic. to dash against; collide with.


Archaic. clash; collision; shock; clatter.

Origin of hurtle

1175–1225; Middle English hurtle, equivalent to hurt(en) (see hurt) + -le -le
Can be confusedhurdle hurl hurtle

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

Related Words for hurtle

lunge, scoot, collide, shoot, fly, rush, bump, tear, race, push, spurt, speed, scramble

Examples from the Web for hurtle

Contemporary Examples of hurtle

  • Over the edge, you hurtle forward at a speed the human body was never meant to travel at.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Skiing is Love at First Swoosh

    David Frum

    March 16, 2013

  • As we hurtle together to the fiscal cliff, the Republicans are getting much the worse of the media battle.

  • Ice masses, especially ones the size of Canadian provinces, do not technically “hurtle.”

    The Daily Beast logo
    Oops, My Mistake

    Christopher Buckley

    December 17, 2009

Historical Examples of hurtle

British Dictionary definitions for hurtle



to project or be projected very quickly, noisily, or violently
(intr) rare to collide or crash

Word Origin for hurtle

C13 hurtlen, from hurten to strike; see hurt 1
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 hurtle

early 14c., hurteln, "to crash together; to crash down, knock down," probably frequentative of hurten (see hurt (v.)) in its original sense. Intransitive meaning "to rush, dash, charge" is late 14c. The essential notion in hurtle is that of forcible collision, in hurl that of forcible projection. Related: Hurtled; hurtling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper