There are 3 main definitions of hero in English:

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hero 1

Pronunciation: /ˈhɪərəʊ/

noun (plural heroes)

1A person who is admired for their courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities: a war hero
More example sentences
  • I admired players but my heroes were the ones who were doing what I wanted to be doing or achieving in a year's time.
  • Bridgette and Francoise concentrated their energy on admiring their current hero.
  • As a nation, we ought to be thankful for the courage of unsung heroes who have sacrificed much to protect society.
brave man, champion, man of courage, great man, man of the hour, conquering hero, victor, winner, conqueror, lionheart, warrior, paladin, knight, white hat;
French chevalier
ideal, ideal man, paragon, exemplar, shining example, perfect example;
favourite, darling;
knight in shining armour, knight on a white charger;
French beau idéal
informal celeb
1.1The chief male character in a book, play, or film, who is typically identified with good qualities, and with whom the reader is expected to sympathize: the hero of Kipling’s story
More example sentences
  • In several films the hero is a comical character, but the portrayal is gentle.
  • All of the book's heroes inspire readers to take action in our own neighborhoods and situations.
  • She's as strong and likable a female character as Davy is a male hero, making this a perfect bookend to book one.
male protagonist, principal male character;
principal male role, lead actor, lead, leading man, leading role, male lead, star role, starring role, star part, male star
1.2(In mythology and folklore) a person of superhuman qualities and often semi-divine origin, in particular one whose exploits were the subject of ancient Greek myths.
Example sentences
  • The myth of the solar hero can be found within many of the ancient civilisations even before the Christian era.
  • The second story transports us into the high-pitched world of the famous Greek heroes Ajax and Achilles.
  • The birth myths of supernatural heroes have been a subject of considerable interest to psychoanalysts.
2 (also hero sandwich) North American another term for hoagie.
Example sentences
  • A little larger than a hero sandwich, it carries a box of flies, a tippet spool, and a pair of pliers.
  • In a Norwegian language class, my teacher illustrated the meaning of the word matpakke - ‘packed lunch’ - by reaching into her backpack and pulling out a hero sandwich wrapped in wax paper.
  • She sat on an overturned twenty-liter bucket (her clothes were too filthy to sit on anything else) and munched a hero sandwich with reflective enjoyment.


from hero to zero

Used to refer to a sudden, rapid decline in popularity or success: he went from hero to zero just three days after being hailed as one of England’s World Cup stars
More example sentences
  • His career illustrates how quickly someone can travel from hero to zero.
  • He has gone from hero to zero in just a few months.
  • He has gone from hero to zero sitting in a blue Benetton.


Middle English (with mythological reference): via Latin from Greek hērōs.

Words that rhyme with hero

De Niro, Nero, Pierrot, Pinero, Rio de Janeiro, sub-zero, zero
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There are 3 main definitions of hero in English:

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Hero 2

Pronunciation: /ˈhɪərəʊ/
Greek Mythology
A priestess of Aphrodite at Sestos on the European shore of the Hellespont, whose lover Leander, a youth of Abydos on the opposite shore, swam the strait nightly to visit her. One stormy night he was drowned and Hero in grief threw herself into the sea.
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There are 3 main definitions of hero in English:

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Hero 3

Pronunciation: /ˈhɪərəʊ/
(1st century), Greek mathematician and inventor; known as Hero of Alexandria. His surviving works are important as a source for ancient practical mathematics and mechanics. He described a number of hydraulic, pneumatic, and other mechanical devices, including elementary applications of the power of steam.
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