Harmful vs Hurt - What's the difference?

harmful | hurt |

As adjectives the difference between harmful and hurt

is that harmful is of a kind likely to be damaging; injurious while hurt is wounded, physically injured.

As a verb hurt is

to be painful.

As a noun hurt is

an emotional or psychological hurt (humiliation or bad experience).

Other Comparisons: What's the difference?



Alternative forms

* harmfull (archaic)


  • of a kind likely to be damaging; injurious
  • Wear a hat to protect your skin from harmful sunlight.

    Usage notes

    * Nouns to which "harmful" is often applied: effect, consequence, impact, influence, emission, chemical, ingredient, substance, gas, agent, additive, drug, radiation, dust, organism, plant, animal, insect, action, act, behavior, component, content, activity, interference, use.


    * injurious; see also


    * beneficial * harmless

    See also

    * harm




  • To be painful.
  • Does your leg still hurt ? / It is starting to feel better.
  • To cause (a creature) physical pain and/or injury.
  • If anybody hurts my little brother I will get upset.
  • To cause (somebody) emotional pain.
  • To undermine, impede, or damage.
  • This latest gaffe hurts the MP's reelection prospects still further.


    * wound, injure

    Derived terms

    * wouldn't hurt a fly

    See also

    * (l)


    (en adjective)
  • Wounded, physically injured.
  • Pained.
  • Noun

    (en noun)
  • An emotional or psychological hurt (humiliation or bad experience)
  • * How to overcome old hurts of the past
  • (archaic) A bodily injury causing pain; a wound or bruise.
  • * 1605 , Shakespeare, King Lear vii
  • I have received a hurt .
  • * John Locke
  • The pains of sickness and hurts all men feel.
  • (archaic) injury; damage; detriment; harm
  • * Shakespeare
  • Thou dost me yet but little hurt .
  • (heraldiccharge) A roundel azure (blue circular spot).
  • (engineering) A band on a trip-hammer helve, bearing the trunnions.
  • A husk.
  • References