\ ə-ˈwāt \
awaited; awaiting; awaits

Definition of await 

transitive verb

1a : to wait for We are awaiting his arrival. await a decision

b : to remain in abeyance until a treaty awaiting ratification

2 : to be in store for He wonders what awaits him next.

3 obsolete : to lie in wait for

intransitive verb

1 : to stay or be in waiting : wait The nation awaited as Congress debated the issue.

2 : to be in store … marched … north to civilization where fame and forturne awaited. —Tom Marvel

3 obsolete : attend

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of await in a Sentence

A crowd of people awaited the train. We're eagerly awaiting his arrival. He was arrested and is now in prison awaiting trial. Her long-awaited new novel is finally being published. The same fate awaits us all.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Instead, the indictment will be handed off to the Justice Department’s National Security Division and its Assistant Attorney General John Demers to await a future prosecution on the slim chance any of the individuals wind up into US custody. Garrett M. Graff, WIRED, "Indicting 12 Russian Hackers Could Be Mueller's Biggest Move Yet," 13 July 2018 According to the press release, Goelz was arrested Tuesday and remained in the custody Thursday night of the U.S. Marshals Service, awaiting a detention hearing next Tuesday in Federal Court in Indianapolis. Stu Hirsch, Post-Tribune, "Indiana high school swim coach charged for alleged sexual relationship with student," 6 July 2018 Lidia Souza, who fled Brazil and now lives in Hyannis awaiting an asylum hearing, was reunited with her son in Chicago last week. Liz Goodwin,, "Government begins returning migrant children to their parents," 6 July 2018 He is being held without bail at the Baltimore County Detention Center awaiting a bail review hearing, police said. Sarah Meehan,, "Baltimore County police believe man killed his stepmother, then her Rosedale neighbor," 27 June 2018 Under administration policy, immigrants claiming asylum are held in detention awaiting a hearing — a process that can often take months or years. Jazmine Ulloa,, "Migrant children won't be reunited with parents who are still in custody, top official says," 26 June 2018 Harington arrived at the church first to await Leslie's arrival. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Rose Leslie Wore a Gorgeous Lace Dress at Her Wedding to Kit Harington," 23 June 2018 From 1923-1970, it was introduced into every session of Congress but often lingered in committee, awaiting a full hearing. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "The ERA Is Back in the News—This Is Why You Should Be Paying Attention," 12 June 2018 Crosby is incarcerated awaiting his sentencing hearing, the release said. Zachary Hansen, ajc, "Former Georgia teacher, police officer admits to sex trafficking a minor," 5 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'await.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of await

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3

History and Etymology for await

Middle English, from Anglo-French aweiter, aguaiter, from a- (from Latin ad-) + guaiter to watch — more at wait

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about await

Dictionary Entries near await








Statistics for await

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for await

The first known use of await was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for await



English Language Learners Definition of await

: to wait for (someone or something)

: to be ready or waiting for (someone or something)


\ ə-ˈwāt \
awaited; awaiting

Kids Definition of await

1 : to wait for await a train

2 : to be ready or waiting for Dinner was awaiting them on their arrival.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on await

What made you want to look up await? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to make amends

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!