intr.v. ached, ach·ing, aches
1. To suffer a dull, sustained pain.
2. To feel sympathy or compassion: ached for his heartbroken friend.
3. To yearn or long: refugees who ached for their homeland.
1. A dull, steady pain. See Synonyms at pain.
2. A painful sorrow.
3. A longing or desire.
[Middle English aken, from Old English acan.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.