Harsh meaning

härsh
The definition of harsh is someone or something unpleasant to the senses or feelings, or someone who is crude or extremely cruel.

An example of harsh is walking outside to the bright sun after being in a dark room for a long time.

An example of harsh is a performer being told by a critic that they're not talented.

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adjective
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Disagreeable to the mind or feelings.

Harsh words.

adjective
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Oppressive, inhospitable, inclement, etc.

A harsh climate.

adjective
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Unpleasantly rough to the touch or other senses.
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So unpleasantly crude, abrupt, or strained as to be offensive to the mind or feelings.

The harsh realities of war.

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Rough, crude, or forbidding in appearance.

Beneath his harsh exterior.

adjective
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Excessively severe; cruel or unfeeling.

A harsh punishment.

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Expressing displeasure or disapproval.

Gave me a harsh look.

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Severe, cruel, or exacting.

Harsh punishment; a harsh overseer.

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(intransitive, slang) To negatively criticize.

Quit harshing me already, I said that I was sorry!

verb
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Unpleasantly sharp or rough.
  • Grating to the ear; discordant.
  • Too bright or vivid to the eye; glaring.
  • Too strong to the taste; bitter.
  • Not smooth to the touch; coarse.
adjective
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(slang) To put a damper on (a mood).

Dude, you're harshing my buzz.

verb
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Disagreeable to one of the senses, as:
  • Disagreeable to the sense of hearing.
    A harsh voice.
  • Disagreeable to the sense of sight.
    Harsh lighting.
  • Unpleasantly coarse and rough to the touch.
    Harsh burlap.
adjective
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Unpleasant, uncomfortable, or hostile to survival.

A harsh wilderness; a harsh winter.

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Origin of harsh

  • Middle English harsk of Scandinavian origin

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English, from Middle Low German harsch (“rough”), literally "hairy," from haer (“hair”). Cognate with German harsch.

    From Wiktionary