I am studying a few words in Noah Webster's 1828 dictionary that have connected definitions or meanings: hearken, heed, observe, attend, and regard.

One definition of 'regard' is: "To consider seriously; to lay to heart"

What does the phrase "lay to heart" mean and where did it originally get its meaning?

  • "Take to heart" means much the same thing. Shakespeare used the phrase I'm sure. Not an answer. I just wonder if it was adapted from that.
    – Avon
    Jul 4, 2015 at 21:57
  • Lay to heart: to set one's mind strongly upon: to be deeply moved by something finedictionary.com/Lay%20to%20heart.html
    – user66974
    Jul 4, 2015 at 21:57

1 Answer 1


It is very closely related to 'take to heart' and has largely been replaced by it.

Ngram take to heart vs lay to heart

It means 'to internalise'.

Verb 1. internalise - incorporate within oneself; make subjective or personal; "internalize a belief" http://www.thefreedictionary.com/internalise


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