heavy (adj.)

Old English hefig "heavy, having much weight; important, grave; oppressive; slow, dull," from Proto-Germanic *hafiga "containing something; having weight" (source also of Old Saxon, Old High German hebig, Old Norse hofugr, Middle Dutch hevich, Dutch hevig), from PIE root *kap- "to grasp." Jazz slang sense of "profound, serious" is from 1937 but would have been comprehensible to an Anglo-Saxon. Heavy industry recorded from 1932. Heavy metal attested by 1839 in chemistry; in nautical jargon from at least 1744 in sense "large-caliber guns on a ship."

While we undervalue the nicely-balanced weight of broadsides which have lately been brought forward with all the grave precision of Cocker, we are well aware of the decided advantages of heavy metal. [United Services Journal, London, 1830]

As a type of rock music, from 1972. Most other Germanic languages use as their primary word for this their equivalent of Middle English swere, Old English swær "heavy, sad; oppressive, grievous; sluggish, inactive, weak" (but never in a physical sense; see serious); for example, Dutch zwaar, Old High German suari, German schwer. The English word died out in the Middle Ages.

heavy (n.)

mid-13c., "something heavy; heaviness," from heavy (adj.). Theatrical sense of "villain" is 1880, short for heavy villain (1843), heavy leading man (1849) or similar phrases.

A "heavy business man," he who performs such parts as Ferardo in the Wife, the Ghost in Hamlet, and Malec, Edmund, Banquo, Buckingham and the principal villains of the drama, [will command at present] from $15 to $20 [per week]. ["The Amateur, or Guide to the Stage," Philadelphia, 1851]

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Definitions of heavy
heavy (adj.)
in an advanced stage of pregnancy;
Synonyms: big / enceinte / expectant / gravid / great / large / with child
heavy (adj.)
heavy investor
Synonyms: big
heavy (adj.)
of great intensity or power or force;
a heavy blow
the fighting was heavy
heavy seas
heavy (adj.)
of comparatively great physical weight or density;
lead is a heavy metal
heavy mahogany furniture
a heavy load
heavy (adj.)
unusually great in degree or quantity or number;
heavy losses
a heavy fine
heavy taxes
heavy traffic
heavy casualties
heavy rain
heavy (adj.)
of the military or industry; using (or being) the heaviest and most powerful armaments or weapons or equipment;
heavy guns
heavy infantry
heavy artillery
a heavy cruiser
heavy industry involves large-scale production of basic products (such as steel) used by other industries
heavy (adj.)
marked by great psychological weight; weighted down especially with sadness or troubles or weariness;
a heavy schedule
a heavy silence
a heavy heart
heavy news
heavy eyelids
heavy (adj.)
usually describes a large person who is fat but has a large frame to carry it;
Synonyms: fleshy / overweight
heavy (adj.)
(used of soil) compact and fine-grained;
the clayey soil was heavy and easily saturated
Synonyms: clayey / cloggy
heavy (adj.)
darkened by clouds;
a heavy sky
Synonyms: lowering / sullen / threatening
heavy (adj.)
(physics, chemistry) being or containing an isotope with greater than average atomic mass or weight;
heavy hydrogen
heavy water
heavy (adj.)
(of an actor or role) being or playing the villain;
Iago is the heavy role in `Othello'
heavy (adj.)
permitting little if any light to pass through because of denseness of matter;
heavy fog
Synonyms: dense / impenetrable
heavy (adj.)
of relatively large extent and density;
a heavy line
heavy (adj.)
made of fabric having considerable thickness;
a heavy coat
heavy (adj.)
full and loud and deep;
heavy sounds
Synonyms: sonorous
heavy (adj.)
given to excessive indulgence of bodily appetites especially for intoxicating liquors;
Synonyms: intemperate / hard
heavy (adj.)
of great gravity or crucial import; requiring serious thought;
heavy matters of state
Synonyms: grave / grievous / weighty
heavy (adj.)
dense or inadequately leavened and hence likely to cause distress in the alimentary canal;
a heavy pudding
heavy (adj.)
sharply inclined;
a heavy grade
heavy (adj.)
full of; bearing great weight;
trees heavy with fruit
Synonyms: weighed down
heavy (adj.)
requiring or showing effort;
heavy breathing
Synonyms: labored / laboured
heavy (adj.)
characterized by effort to the point of exhaustion; especially physical effort;
heavy going
heavy work
Synonyms: arduous / backbreaking / grueling / gruelling / hard / laborious / operose / punishing / toilsome
heavy (adj.)
lacking lightness or liveliness;
heavy humor
Synonyms: leaden
heavy (adj.)
(of sleep) deep and complete;
a heavy sleep
Synonyms: profound / sound / wakeless
heavy (n.)
an actor who plays villainous roles;
heavy (n.)
a serious (or tragic) role in a play;
heavy (adv.)
slowly as if burdened by much weight;
time hung heavy on their hands
Synonyms: heavily