expect

verb
ex·​pect | \ ik-ˈspekt How to pronounce expect (audio) \
expected; expecting; expects

Definition of expect

transitive verb

1a : to consider probable or certain expect to be forgiven expect that things will improve
b : to consider reasonable, due, or necessary expected hard work from the students
c : to consider bound in duty or obligated they expect you to pay your bills
2 : to anticipate or look forward to the coming or occurrence of we expect them any minute now expected a telephone call
3 : suppose, think
4 archaic : await

intransitive verb

1 : to be pregnant : await the birth of one's child used in progressive tenses she's expecting next month
2 : to look forward
3 archaic : wait, stay

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Other Words from expect

expectable \ ik-​ˈspek-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce expect (audio) \ adjective
expectably \ ik-​ˈspek-​tə-​blē How to pronounce expect (audio) \ adverb
expectedly adverb
expectedness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for expect

expect, hope, look mean to await some occurrence or outcome. expect implies a high degree of certainty and usually involves the idea of preparing or envisioning. expects to be finished by Tuesday hope implies little certainty but suggests confidence or assurance in the possibility that what one desires or longs for will happen. hopes to find a job soon look, with to, implies assurance that expectations will be fulfilled looks to a tidy profit from the sale ; with for it implies less assurance and suggests an attitude of expectancy and watchfulness. look for rain when the wind shifts to the northeast

Examples of expect in a Sentence

As expected, the election was very close. It's expected that the new products will be available next month. Prices are expected to rise. He's opposed to the new law, as you might expect. Good things sometimes happen when you least expect them. I'm expecting a phone call. The expected delivery date is next month. He's a teacher who expects hard work from his students. We expected more from you. This is not the kind of behavior I expected of you.
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Recent Examples on the Web The Washington Wizards are offering their coaching job to Wes Unseld Jr. and expect to reach an agreement with him, a person with knowledge of the details said Friday. Brian Mahoney, Star Tribune, 16 July 2021 Beetham also has a connection with touted Michigan freshman J.J. McCarthy, the former Nazareth and IMG Academy quarterback many expect to be leading the Wolverines sooner rather than later. Rick Armstrong, chicagotribune.com, 16 July 2021 No deals were announced, though regional policy analysts expect some are under way. Brett Forrest, WSJ, 16 July 2021 Does Lillard expect to play for the Blazers next season? Mark Medina, USA TODAY, 16 July 2021 And that experience carries a warning for the United States if its current bout of inflation eases, as many economists expect, and its economy falls back into the cycle of weak inflation that preceded the pandemic. New York Times, 15 July 2021 The International Monetary Fund and private sector forecasters expect economic growth this year of about 8% but say that should decline next year. Joe Mcdonald, ajc, 15 July 2021 The International Monetary Fund and private sector forecasters expect economic growth this year of about 8 percent but say that should decline in 2022. NBC News, 15 July 2021 Our experience, while delightfully relaxing and comfortable aboard a spiffy ship recently enlarged and renewed, sometimes was not the carefree voyage that cruisers normally expect. cleveland, 15 July 2021

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

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First Known Use of expect

1560, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 3

History and Etymology for expect

Latin exspectare to look forward to, from ex- + spectare to look at, frequentative of specere to look — more at spy

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Learn More About expect

Statistics for expect

Last Updated

20 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Expect.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expect. Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for expect

expect

verb

English Language Learners Definition of expect

: to think that something will probably or certainly happen
: to think that (someone or something) will arrive or that (something) will happen
: to consider (something) to be reasonable, required, or necessary

expect

verb
ex·​pect | \ ik-ˈspekt How to pronounce expect (audio) \
expected; expecting

Kids Definition of expect

1 : to think that something probably will be or happen They expect rain. Close up the motorcycle looked even better than he expected.— Beverly Cleary, The Mouse and the Motorcycle
2 : to await the arrival of We're expecting guests.
3 : to consider to be obliged I expect you to pay your debts.
4 : to consider reasonable, due, or necessary I expect your attention.

expect

intransitive verb
ex·​pect | \ ik-ˈspekt How to pronounce expect (audio) \

Medical Definition of expect

: to be pregnant : await the birth of one's child used in progressive tenses she's expecting next month

More from Merriam-Webster on expect

Nglish: Translation of expect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expect for Arabic Speakers

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