Hard a. [Compar. Harder superl. Hardest.]
1. Not easily penetrated, cut, or separated into parts; not yielding to pressure; firm; solid; compact; -- applied to material bodies, and opposed to soft; as, hard wood; hard flesh; a hard apple.
2. Difficult, mentally or judicially; not easily apprehended, decided, or resolved; as a hard problem.
The hard causes they brought unto Moses. --Ex. xviii. 26.
In which are some things hard to be understood. --2 Peter iii. 16.
3. Difficult to accomplish; full of obstacles; laborious; fatiguing; arduous; as, a hard task; a disease hard to cure.
4. Difficult to resist or control; powerful.
The stag was too hard for the horse. --L'Estrange.
A power which will be always too hard for them. --Addison.
5. Difficult to bear or endure; not easy to put up with or consent to; hence, severe; rigorous; oppressive; distressing; unjust; grasping; as, a hard lot; hard times; hard fare; a hard winter; hard conditions or terms.
I never could drive a hard bargain. --Burke.
6. Difficult to please or influence; stern; unyielding; obdurate; unsympathetic; unfeeling; cruel; as, a hard master; a hard heart; hard words; a hard character.
7. Not easy or agreeable to the taste; harsh; stiff; rigid; ungraceful; repelling; as, a hard style.
Figures harder than even the marble itself. --Dryden.
8. Rough; acid; sour, as liquors; as, hard cider.
9. Pron. Abrupt or explosive in utterance; not aspirated, sibilated, or pronounced with a gradual change of the organs from one position to another; -- said of certain consonants, as c in came, and g in go, as distinguished from the same letters in center, general, etc.
10. Wanting softness or smoothness of utterance; harsh; as, a hard tone.
11. Painting (a) Rigid in the drawing or distribution of the figures; formal; lacking grace of composition. (b) Having disagreeable and abrupt contrasts in the coloring or light and shade.
Hard cancer, Hard case, etc. See under Cancer, Case, etc.
Hard clam, or Hard-shelled clam Zool., the quahog.
Hard coal, anthracite, as distinguished from bituminous coal (soft coal).
Hard and fast. Naut. See under Fast.
Hard finish Arch., a smooth finishing coat of hard fine plaster applied to the surface of rough plastering.
Hard lines, hardship; difficult conditions.
Hard money, coin or specie, as distinguished from paper money.
Hard oyster Zool., the northern native oyster. [Local, U. S.]
Hard pan, the hard stratum of earth lying beneath the soil; hence, figuratively, the firm, substantial, fundamental part or quality of anything; as, the hard pan of character, of a matter in dispute, etc. See Pan.
Hard rubber. See under Rubber.
Hard solder. See under Solder.
Hard water, water, which contains lime or some mineral substance rendering it unfit for washing. See Hardness, 3.
Hard wood, wood of a solid or hard texture; as walnut, oak, ash, box, and the like, in distinction from pine, poplar, hemlock, etc.
In hard condition, in excellent condition for racing; having firm muscles; -- said of race horses.
Syn: -- Solid; arduous; powerful; trying; unyielding; stubborn; stern; flinty; unfeeling; harsh; difficult; severe; obdurate; rigid. See Solid, and Arduous.
Har·der n. Zool. A South African mullet, salted for food.
adj 1: not easy; requiring great physical or mental effort to
accomplish or comprehend or endure; "a difficult
task"; "nesting places on the cliffs are difficult of
access"; "difficult times"; "a difficult child";
"found himself in a difficult situation"; "why is it
so hard for you to keep a secret?" [syn: difficult]
2: metaphorically hard; "a hard fate"; "took a hard look"; "a
hard bargainer"; "a hard climb" [ant: soft]
3: not yielding to pressure or easily penetrated; "hard as
rock" [ant: soft]
4: very strong or vigorous; "strong winds"; "a hard left to the
chin"; "a knockout punch"; "a severe blow" [syn: knockout,
5: characterized by toilsome effort to the point of exhaustion;
especially physical effort; "worked their arduous way up
the mining valley"; "a grueling campaign"; "hard labor";
"heavy work"; "heavy going"; "spent many laborious hours
on the project"; "set a punishing pace" [syn: arduous, backbreaking,
grueling, gruelling, heavy, laborious, punishing,
6: of speech sounds [ant: soft]
7: of a drinker or drinking; indulging intemperately; "does a
lot of hard drinking"; "a heavy drinker" [syn: hard(a),
8: having undergone fermentation; "hard cider" [syn: fermented]
9: having a high alcoholic content; "hard liquor" [syn: strong]
10: unfortunate or hard to bear; "had hard luck"; "a tough
break" [syn: tough]
11: dried out; "hard dry rolls left over from the day before"
adv 1: with effort or force or vigor; "the team played hard";
"worked hard all day"; "pressed hard on the lever";
"hit the ball hard"; "slammed the door hard"
2: with firmness; "held hard to the railing" [syn: firmly]
3: earnestly or intently; "thought hard about it"; "stared hard
at the accused"
4: causing great damage or hardship; "industries hit hard by
the depression"; "she was severely affected by the bank's
failure" [syn: severely]
5: slowly and with difficulty; "prejudices die hard"
6: indulging excessively; "he drank heavily" [syn: heavily, intemperately]
7: into a solid condition; "concrete that sets hard within a
8: very near or close in space or time; "it stands hard by the
railroad tracks"; "they were hard on his heels"; "a strike
followed hard upon the plant's opening"
9: with pain or distress or bitterness; "he took the rejection
10: to the full extent possible; all the way; "hard alee"; "the
ship went hard astern"; "swung the wheel hard left"
[also: hardest, harder]