Sunday, March 23, 2014

Hearty or Hardy?


An article in the Record-Eagle quoted a local Conservation District coordinator as saying, “They are pretty hearty plants.” He may actually have said that, but the reporter should have quietly corrected the word choice to what it should be: “They are pretty hardy plants.”

Hearty has many shades of meaning, but they are all connected—at least metaphorically—to the heart.

·     *  Unrestrained expression: “He gave a hearty laugh after I finished the joke.”
·     *  Zealous and fervent: “She is a hearty supporter of the Weight Watchers’ program.”
·      * Performed with energy: “In a chug-a-lug contest, you give your opponent a hearty slap on the back when he slams the stein down.”
·      * Exhibiting warmth and affection: “He gave me a hearty smile as soon as he spotted me across the room.”
·      * Merry and convivial: “They promised me that a hearty time would be had by all.”
·     *  Sincere and deeply felt: “She has a hearty dislike for most politicians.”
·      * Nourishing and strengthening: “There is nothing like a hearty bowl of chicken soup on a cold winter’s day.”
·      * Robust and voracious: “He has a hearty appetite; prepare plenty of food.”

In contrast, hardy is connected to the idea of hardness, strength, durability.

·      * Courageous and daring: “Are you hardy enough to take on another responsibility?”
·      * Capable of enduring fatigue: “The hardy cyclists worked their way to the top of the mountain.”
·      * Able to grow in harsh conditions: “They are pretty hardy plants.”

Available from McFarland & Co.: Word Parts Dictionary, 2nd edition

Nook edition

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