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[hur-tl] /ˈhɜr tl/
verb (used without object), hurtled, hurtling.
to rush violently; move with great speed:
The car hurtled down the highway.
to move or go noisily or resoundingly, as with violent or rapid motion:
The sound was deafening, as tons of snow hurtled down the mountain.
Archaic. to strike together or against something; collide.
verb (used with object), hurtled, hurtling.
to drive violently; fling; dash.
Archaic. to dash against; collide with.
Archaic. clash; collision; shock; clatter.
Origin of hurtle
1175-1225; Middle English hurtle, equivalent to hurt(en) (see hurt) + -le -le
Can be confused
hurdle, hurl, hurtle.
1. speed, fly, race, rush, shoot. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for hurtling
  • The effect would have been as though a lousy cosmic golfer tore up a giant chunk of turf and sent it hurtling into orbit.
  • Eventually the roar fades as the swarm misses our scent, hurtling on relentlessly in the midday sun.
  • Two years is a long time to travel for a blind date, especially if it's a rather homely piece of rock hurtling through space.
  • Your standing on a bridge and can see a train hurtling toward five people who will be killed.
  • Old satellites, chips of paint and jettisoned rocket stages are hurtling around the world at thousands of kilometres an hour.
  • Matter from galaxies is hurtling around, hence slowing time, before to long galaxies are older than the origin point.
  • The wedge of blue sky suddenly appears, hurtling toward us.
  • Or there's an asteroid-size scandal hurtling her way, and she wants to be outside the blast area when it detonates.
  • The scenarios usually involve an out-of-control trolley car hurtling down a track toward a group of five unsuspecting people.
  • Since then, however, life-support science has been hurtling forward as rapidly as rocket design.
British Dictionary definitions for hurtling


to project or be projected very quickly, noisily, or violently
(intransitive) (rare) to collide or crash
Word Origin
C13 hurtlen, from hurten to strike; see hurt1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hurtling



early 14c., hurteln, "to crash together; to crash down, knock down," probably frequentative of hurten (see hurt (v.)) in its original sense. Intransitive meaning "to rush, dash, charge" is late 14c. The essential notion in hurtle is that of forcible collision, in hurl that of forcible projection. Related: Hurtled; hurtling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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