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1. In accordance with one's deepest feelings or desires. He's not interested in this accounting job because he's an artist at heart.
2. Fundamentally or intrinsically. Nicole is a kind person at heart—you just need to spend some more time with her.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
1. Fundamentally, basically, as in He's a good fellow at heart. It was first recorded in Alexander Pope's Epistle to a Lady (1735): "But every Woman is at heart a Rake."
2. In one's deepest feelings, as a great concern, as in The governor has the party's best interests at heart. [Early 1700s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
at ˈheartused to say what somebody is really like even though they may seem to be different: He seems strict but he’s a very kind man at heart. OPPOSITE: on the surface
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
In one's deepest feelings; fundamentally.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.