Meaning of HEAVY in English


I. ˈhevē, -vi adjective

( -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English hevy, from Old English hefig, Old Saxon hēbig; akin to Old High German hebīc heavy, Old Norse höfugr heavy, Old English hebban to lift, raise — more at heave


a. : having great weight : being such as may be lifted or moved only with effort : weighty , ponderous

a heavy load

b. : having a high specific gravity and great weight in proportion to bulk — opposed to light

gold is one of the heavier metals


(1) of an isotope : having or being atoms of greater than normal mass

carbon 13 and 14 are both heavy carbons

(2) of a compound : characterized by heavy isotopes

heavy ammonia

heavy ice


a. obsolete : harsh , oppressive

b. : hard to bear, endure, accomplish, or fulfill : burdensome

suffering under the heavy exactions of this tyrant

often : grievous , afflictive

a heavy sorrow

3. : of weighty import : serious , grave , consequential

heavy news

words heavy with meaning

4. : deep , profound , intense

a heavy silence

heavy late frosts destroyed the crop


a. : laden or borne down by something weighty or oppressive : encumbered, burdened

returned with heavy spirit from the conference

today's world is heavy with so-called celebrities — J.P.Jones

: bowed down (as with care, grief, sorrow)

a light wife doth make a heavy husband — Shakespeare

b. : pregnant , gravid ; especially : approaching parturition — used chiefly in the phrase heavy with young


a. : slow or dull from or as if from loss of vitality or resiliency : sluggish , inactive

a tired heavy step

a heavy countenance

b. : lacking sparkle or vivacity : drab , stupid , inert

a dull heavy style lacking liveliness and appeal

a heavy writer

c. : lacking mirth or gaiety : doleful , leaden

heavy cheer

made heavy work of the conversation

d. : characterized by declining prices

the market was slow and heavy

government bonds have been heavy for some time


a. : overcome or dulled with weariness : drowsy , sleepy

eyes heavy from prolonged study

b. : dull and confused due to interruption of sleep : having a feeling of disorientation due to the relaxation of sleep

the children were heavy with sleep

8. : greater in quantity or quality than the average of its kind or class: as

a. : unusually or exceptionally large

a heavy fall of snow

heavy crops

heavy traffic

b. : of great force or momentum

a heavy storm

the heaviest sea in the last three seasons

c. : threatening to rain or snow : overcast , lowering

a heavy sky

heavy clouds

d. : impeding motion : cloggy , clayey

a heavy road

cold heavy soils

e. : coming as if from a depth : loud , deep

the heavy roll of thunder

a heavy bass voice

f. : massive , coarse

a heavy scar

a heavy growth of timber

g. : tending to produce dullness or sleepiness : oppressive

the heavy odor of tuberoses

h. : steep , acute

a heavy grade

i. : laborious , difficult

a heavy task

likely to be heavy sledding for a while

j. : being something specified to an exceptional degree

a heavy drinker

heavy losers

industry is a heavy user of electric power

broadly : operating or dealing in large quantities

heavy buying of steel

a heavy buyer

k. : having a high alcohol content : rich in malt and hop constituents and usually dark in color

heavy ale

l. : of large capacity or output

a heavy pump

m. : having a high boiling point — used especially of distillates (as of petroleum)

heavy hydrocarbons

heavy ends present in gasoline


(1) : set or printed in boldface

(2) : made with too much pressure of the sheet against the printing surface

a heavy impression

(3) : 11 points thick — used of the metal of an unmounted printing surface (as a copper engraving, stereotype, or electrotype)

o. of a domino : having a comparatively large number of pips

the 6-6 is heavier than the 6-3


a. : digested slowly or with difficulty usually because of excessive richness or seasoning

a heavy fruitcake

b. : not properly raised or leavened

heavy bread

: lacking in lightness

rich dark cakes often tend to be heavy


a. : belonging to or concerned with a class above a certain usual weight

heavy woolens

heavy trunk lines

heavy breeds

b. : producing metal, mineral, oil, or other basic substances and products derived from them

heavy industries

specifically : producing products on which other industries function


a. : heavily armed with guns of large caliber

heavy dragoons

b. : having maximally concentrated firepower often from a battery of medium-caliber guns

heavy antiaircraft emplacements

c. : heavily armored


a. : having stress or conspicuous sonority

heavy rhythm

— used especially of syllables in accentual verse; contrasted with light

b. : being the strongest of three degrees of stress in speech

the heavy stress on the first syllable of basketball

c. of a consonant : voiced — used especially in connection with shorthand symbolization

13. : relating or assigned to theatrical parts or scenes of a grave or somber nature

played heavy roles for years


weighty , ponderous , cumbrous , cumbersome , hefty : heavy implies literally of greater weight than the average of its kind or class and figuratively more or less depressing, effort-taking, or unendurable to the mind or spirits, or depressed or dispirited

a heavy bag

a heavy child

a heavy volume of literary criticism

a heavy scent of lilacs

a heavy heart

weighty implies actually and not relatively heavy; figuratively it implies of serious import

a boy carrying weighty packages

a weighty series of international decisions

weighty questions about our future domestic policy

ponderous implies literally a weighty massiveness, usually difficult to maneuver, or figuratively something complicatedly labored, usually suggesting a certain slow and dull deliberateness of mental effort

a ponderous elephant

heavy concentrations of troops and weapons for ponderous operations overland — H.H.Martin

a sober and somewhat ponderous analysis of the police work — Anthony Boucher

a book dealing with the necessity for world organization and the fundamentals of world law might be dull or at least ponderous reading — A.E.Stevenson †1965

cumbrous and cumbersome imply literally a heaviness and bulkiness difficult to move, carry, or otherwise deal with; figuratively, they apply to what is ponderous and unwieldy

cumbrous old-fashioned wagons — Eddie Doherty

one long and cumbrous sentence after another — M.W.Straight

the camel … that lumbering and cumbersome beast — Story of Camel Hair

the cumbersome amendment procedure of the outworn constitution — F.L.Paxson

hefty implies, literally, heaviness or solid weightiness usually as estimated by picking up in one's arms, holding in one's hand, or measuring by the eye against an imagined norm or, figuratively, weighty

a hefty rock

a hefty burden — A.J.Bruwer

hefty peasants — Time

hefty but handsome in her wedding dress — W.S.Maugham

embodying so hefty a theme in a book — Time

II. verb

( -ed/-ing/-es )

Etymology: Middle English hevyen, from Old English hefigian, from hefig, adjective

transitive verb

obsolete : to make burdensome : weigh down : oppress , burden

intransitive verb

: to play the role of a heavy

III. adverb

( -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English hevy, from Old English hefige, from hefig, adjective

: in a heavy manner : heavily

time hung heavy on their hands

a heavy -laden wagon

IV. noun

( -es )

Etymology: heavy (I)

1. heavies plural

a. : heavy cavalry

b. : heavy artillery

c. : heavy tanks of an army or other military force

d. : heavy bombers


a. : heavyweight 1a

b. : a theatrical role or an actor representing a dignified or imposing person

c. : villain 4

3. : something (as underwear or cloth) heavy in comparison with typical members of its kind

V. ˈhēvē, -vi adjective

( -er/-est )

Etymology: heave (I) + -y

of a horse : affected with heaves

VI. adjective

1. : long 11 — usually used with on

heavy on creative ideas and light on financial plans — Susan Davis

2. : being or playing hard rock

3. : important : prominent

a heavy star unable to escape his groupies — Garry Wills

VII. noun

1. : someone or something influential, serious, or important

2. : muscleman : thug

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.