1 BODY ORGAN (C) the organ in your chest which pumps blood through your body: Eating too many fatty foods is bad for the heart. | My heart was beating so fast I thought it would burst. | have heart trouble/have a heart condition (=have problems with your heart) | a weak heart (=an unhealthy heart)
2 EMOTIONS/LOVE (C) especially literary the part of your body that feels strong emotions and feelings: My head said no, but my heart kept saying yes. | affairs of the heart (=matters connected with love) | (deep) in your heart (=used when saying what someone really feels): She still loved him, deep down in her heart. | heart and soul (=completely): You love the boy heart and soul, don't you? | break sb's heart (=to make someone extremely sad, especially by ending a romantic relationship with them)
3 YOUR CHEST (countable usually singular) the part of your chest near your heart: He put his hand across his heart to show where the pain was.
4 SHAPE (C) a shape used to represent a heart
5 from the heart if you say or mean something from the heart, you really mean it or feel it very strongly: He spoke simply but from the heart. | from the bottom of my heart: I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. | straight from the heart: What she said came straight from the heart.
6 in your heart of hearts if you know, feel, or believe something in your heart of hearts, you are secretly sure about it although you may not admit it: Claire knew in her heart of hearts that she would never go back there.
7 IMPORTANT PART OF STH the most important part of a problem, question etc: get to the heart of the matter/problem/question etc: The new book gets to the heart of the controversy over nuclear power.
8 THE MIDDLE PART OF AN AREA (C) the middle of an area: in the heart of: somewhere deep in the heart of Texas
9 know/learn something by heart to know or learn something so that you can remember all of it: You have to know all the music by heart.
10 set your heart on to want something very much: The coach had set his heart on winning.
a) (C) CARD GAMES a heart shape printed in red on a playing card
b) hearts (plural) the suit (=set) of playing cards that have these shapes on them: the ace of hearts
c) (C) one of the cards in this set: Have you got any hearts?
12 kind-hearted/cold-hearted/hard-hearted etc having a kind, unkind, cruel etc character
13 have a heart of gold to be very kind
14 have a heart of stone to be very cruel or unsympathetic
15 a man/woman after my own heart someone who likes the same things or behaves in the same way that you do: Geoff was clear-thinking and decisive - a man after my own heart.
16 at heart if you are a particular kind of person at heart, that is the kind of person that you really are: I've always been a country boy at heart.
—see also: have sb's (best) interests at heart interest 1 (5), young at heart young 1 (4)
17 close/dear to sb's heart very important to someone
18 my/his/her heart leapt literary used to say that someone suddenly felt happy and full of hope
19 my/his etc heart sank used to say that someone suddenly lost hope and began to feel sad: Our hearts sank when we heard the results of the voting.
20 my heart was in my mouth used to say that you suddenly felt very afraid
21 my heart bleeds (for sb) used to say that you do not really feel any sympathy towards someone: “He's had to sell his Ferrari.” “My heart bleeds for him.”
22 my/his/her heart goes out to sb used to say that someone feels a lot of sympathy towards another person
23 my/his/her heart isn't in it used to say that someone does not really want to do something: I tried to join in the fun, but somehow my heart wasn't in it.
24 not have the heart to do something to be unable to do something because it will make someone unhappy: I didn't have the heart to tell my daughter we couldn't keep the puppy.
25 be in good heart formal to feel cheerful and confident: Our troops are in good heart and ready for action.
26 take heart to feel encouraged: We took heart when we saw the sign, knowing that we were close to home.
27 take sth to heart to be very upset by something that someone says or does to you: Don't take her criticisms so much to heart.
28 do sth to your heart's content to do something as much as you want: After I leave, Joe can sing in the shower to his heart's content.
29 it does your heart good to see/hear used to say that something makes you feel happy: It does my heart good to see him running around again.
30 have a heart! often humorous used to tell someone not to be too strict or unkind
31 with all your heart with all your strength, energy or emotion: Ben hated school with all his heart.
32 have your heart's desire/have everything your heart could desire to get everything that you could possibly want
33 know the way to sb's heart humorous to know the way to please someone: What a great meal! You certainly know the way to a man's heart!
34 VEGETABLE (C) the firm middle part of some vegetables: artichoke hearts
35 his/her heart is in the right place informal used to say that someone is really a kind person, even though they may not appear to be: He's a little grouchy sometimes, but his heart's in the right place.
—see also: a broken heart broken 2 (10), cross my heart cross 1 (10), eat your heart out eat (2), have a change of heart change 2 (1), sick at heart sick 1 (9), strike at the heart of strike 1 (9), wear your heart on your sleeve wear 1 (10), win sb's heart win 1 (3), with a heavy heart heavy 1 (24)

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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