ex·​pec·​tant | \ ik-ˈspek-tənt How to pronounce expectant (audio) \

Definition of expectant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : characterized by expectation
2 : expecting the birth of a child expectant mothers



Definition of expectant (Entry 2 of 2)

: one who is looking forward to something

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from expectant


expectantly adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for expectant

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of expectant in a Sentence

Adjective An expectant crowd waited for her arrival. expectant crowds gathered at the spot where the President was scheduled to make an appearance Noun divinity students who were all expectants for a curacy
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective On Wednesdays and Fridays, stores have designated an hour, from 11 a.m. to noon, for at-risk shoppers including senior citizens, expectant mothers, and those with underlying health concerns, according to the company website. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "J.C. Penney closing more stores in bankruptcy. Is your store liquidating? See the list.," 9 July 2020 The expectant Game of Thrones actor sported a pink babydoll dress overtop a white T-shirt, a styling trend that harks back to the ’90s. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Sophie Turner Has Found the Coolest Maternity Dress for Summer," 7 July 2020 Hospital policy requires that expectant mothers being investigated for COVID-19 infection be separated from their newborns. Bryant Furlow, ProPublica, "A Hospital Was Accused of Racially Profiling Native American Women. Staff Said Administrators Impeded an Investigation.," 22 June 2020 Our work has taught us that young expectant fathers have tremendous respect for prenatal care doctors, nurses, and midwives, who are there to make sure that babies get off to good start. Paul Florsheim And David Moore, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Opinion: It's time to help men become fathers by giving them the prenatal care they need," 18 June 2020 In her acceptance speech, the then-expectant mother gave a sweet shout out to the director, who was also at the event, as well as her daughter. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, "Michelle Williams and Thomas Kail Welcome First Child Together: Reports," 23 June 2020 Hundreds of miles away from the election chaos in upstate New York, Astrid and Alice are seeking refuge at a hippy farm for expectant moms. EW.com, "The Politician season 2 binge recap," 19 June 2020 At-risk customers include senior citizens, expectant mothers, and those with underlying health concerns. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, "JC Penney store closing clearance sales begin: What to know, discounts, dates," 18 June 2020 Father-inclusive prenatal care is necessary to help expectant fathers who need support and instruction to meet the challenges of fatherhood, but this idea is also important for the well-being of mothers and babies, who need fathers to be healthy. Paul Florsheim And David Moore, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Opinion: It's time to help men become fathers by giving them the prenatal care they need," 18 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Meanwhile, the then-expectant mom gave updates on her pregnancy thus far. Mary Green, PEOPLE.com, "This Is Us Star Chris Sullivan and Wife Rachel Welcome Son Bear Maxwell," 30 July 2020 The club asked supporters to come dressed in lilywhite on what was a hot and murky September evening, expectant of a win to open this new chapter in their history. SI.com, "Tottenham's 7 Most Embarrassing Defeats Under Mauricio Pochettino," 25 Sep. 2019 This at a time when party operatives were worse that a dirty U.S. Congressmen, gift-expectant, institutionally incapable of hearing anything at all. Robert Sullivan, Vogue, "Meeting Gorbachev, Werner Herzog's Documentary, Is a Historical Thriller for Today," 27 May 2019 Also on Thursday, expectant Catherine shared a new photo of the adorable big brother-to-be after Sean’s tweet. Karen Mizoguchi, PEOPLE.com, "Father-to-Be Sean Lowe Shares the Hilarious Reality of 'Parenting a Toddler'," 15 Mar. 2018 The expectant Keeping Up with the Kardashians reality star, 33, showed off her glamorous ensemble on Instagram Wednesday during her sibling trip in Japan. Karen Mizoguchi, PEOPLE.com, "Is This Khloé Kardashian's Sexiest Maternity Photo Ever? (She's in the Shower!)," 28 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'expectant.' 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 expectant


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1609, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about expectant

Time Traveler for expectant

Time Traveler

The first known use of expectant was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for expectant

Last Updated

22 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Expectant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expectant. Accessed 10 Aug. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for expectant


How to pronounce expectant (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of expectant

: feeling or thinking that something will happen : expecting something
: expecting the birth of a child : soon to become a parent


ex·​pec·​tant | \ ik-ˈspek-tənt How to pronounce expectant (audio) \

Kids Definition of expectant

1 : looking forward to or waiting for something
2 : awaiting the birth of a child an expectant mother


ex·​pec·​tant | \ -tənt How to pronounce expectant (audio) \

Medical Definition of expectant

: expecting the birth of a child expectant mothers

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on expectant

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt painting a young scholar and his tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

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!