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hero (n.1)

late 14c., "man of superhuman strength or physical courage," from Old French heroe (14c., Modern French héros), from Latin heros (plural heroes) "hero, demi-god, illustrious man," from Greek hērōs (plural hērōes) "demi-god," a variant singular of which was hērōe. This is of uncertain origin; perhaps originally "defender, protector" and from PIE root *ser- (1) "to protect," but Beekes writes that it is "Probably a Pre-Greek word."

Meaning "man who exhibits great bravery" in any course of action is from 1660s in English. Sense of "chief male character in a play, story, etc." first recorded 1690s. Hero-worship is from 1713 in reference to ancient cults and mysteries; of living men by 1830s. In Homer, of the Greeks before Troy, then a comprehensive term used of warriors generally, also of all free men in the Heroic Age. In classical mythology from at least the time of Hesiod (8c. B.C.E.) "man born from a god and a mortal," especially one who had done service to mankind; with the exception of Heracles limited to local deities and patrons of cities.

hero (n.2)

1955, the New York City term for a sandwich elsewhere called submarine, grinder, poor boy (New Orleans), or hoagie (Philadelphia); origin unknown, perhaps so called for its great size (from hero (n.1)), or a folk-etymology alteration of Greek gyro as a type of sandwich.

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Definitions of hero from WordNet
1
hero (n.)
a man distinguished by exceptional courage and nobility and strength;
RAF pilots were the heroes of the Battle of Britain
hero (n.)
the principal character in a play or movie or novel or poem;
hero (n.)
someone who fights for a cause;
Synonyms: champion / fighter / paladin
hero (n.)
(classical mythology) a being of great strength and courage celebrated for bold exploits; often the offspring of a mortal and a god;
hero (n.)
a large sandwich made of a long crusty roll split lengthwise and filled with meats and cheese (and tomato and onion and lettuce and condiments); different names are used in different sections of the United States;
Synonyms: bomber / grinder / hero sandwich / hoagie / hoagy / Cuban sandwich / Italian sandwich / poor boy / sub / submarine / submarine sandwich / torpedo / wedge / zep
2
Hero (n.)
Greek mathematician and inventor who devised a way to determine the area of a triangle and who described various mechanical devices (first century);
Synonyms: Heron / Hero of Alexandria
Hero (n.)
(Greek mythology) priestess of Aphrodite who killed herself when her lover Leander drowned while trying to swim the Hellespont to see her;
From wordnet.princeton.edu