Definition of heart-rending in English:



  • Causing great sadness or distress.

    • ‘Almost two years after Mary's untimely death, Kathleen is on a mission to make people aware of SADS with her heart-rending story.’
    • ‘The Prince listened as his former shipmate recounted a heart-rending story of his wife's illness and his own plunge into depression.’
    • ‘This sounds like the set up of a heart-rending coming-of-old-age story.’
    • ‘Her heart-rending story touched a nation and even inspired its Prime Minister.’
    • ‘From Virginia now, a heart-rending story of early birth and early death here.’
    • ‘The heart-rending scenes that he witnessed turned him into a social worker and a spiritual thinker.’
    • ‘There too I had heard heart-rending stories of the way maids were exploited and ill-treated by their employers.’
    • ‘The girl uttered a cry, long, tremulous, heart-rending, piteous.’
    • ‘At the moment of judgement, some displayed surprise, some anger, others a heart-rending sadness.’
    • ‘Their story, combining heart-rending drama and gutsy determination, was a natural for the big screen.’
    • ‘The storyline of the opera focuses on the heart-rending love story between the poet Rodolfo and the seamstress Mimi, a fragile but resolute girl.’
    • ‘Jacobs' heart-rending story never fails to move audiences to tears.’
    • ‘This makes the events that follow all the more poignant, and later heart-rending.’
    • ‘His final years in hospital were tragicomic and heart-rending.’
    • ‘Everybody has bitter experiences, horrific memories, and heart-rending stories of the past.’
    • ‘There is nothing about the story that is not heart-rending, sickening or sordid.’
    • ‘Their stories are heart-rending and I am glad we are able to offer them the chance of safety and a better life.’
    • ‘Yes, there have been Brits caught up in the horror, with heart-rending stories of drowned families and friends.’
    • ‘Dylan's heart-rending story prompted seven times the normal number of inquiries to Adoption Matters from people desperate to adopt him.’
    • ‘And in the most heart-rending story, we were shown that in certain cases the whole regime is simply too much for some young people.’
    distressing, upsetting, disturbing, heartbreaking, sad, tragic, painful, saddening, traumatic, agonizing, desolate, harrowing, excruciating
    pitiful, piteous, poignant, plaintive, affecting, moving, tear-jerking
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