expect

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

Definition of expect

intransitive verb

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

transitive verb

1 archaic : await
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
4a : 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

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Other Words from expect

expectable \ ik-​ˈspek-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce expectable (audio) \ adjective
expectably \ ik-​ˈspek-​tə-​blē How to pronounce expectably (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

According to LiveScience, most people are expected to already be at home and in bed, and that time won't bother many bars or restaurants. Megan Friedman, Country Living, "10 Things You Didn't Know About Daylight Saving Time," 6 Mar. 2019 Several members of the royal family are expected to attend including Princess Anne, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "A Look Back at Prince Charles's Investiture as the Prince of Wales, 50 Years Later," 3 Mar. 2019 Her besties Jessica Mulroney and Priyanka Chopra are also expected to attend. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Who's Attending Meghan Markle's Baby Shower in NYC?," 19 Feb. 2019 Analysts polled by FactSet had expected $119.1 million of revenue in the period. Patrick Thomas, WSJ, "Shake Shack Revenue Rises, Helped by Higher Prices," 25 Feb. 2019 Some of Meghan's friends from Northwestern University were expected to attend as well. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle Rocks a Camel Coat and Workout Gear to Return Home from Her Baby Shower," 21 Feb. 2019 He is expected to make a full recovery and hopes to join the Air Force afterwards. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "This Teen Fell Off A Bridge While Trying To Take a Selfie And Broke Almost Every Bone in His Face," 21 Feb. 2019 Many expect the company to finally get back into the graphics game enough to hassle Nvidia too. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, "Why you should or shouldn't buy a GeForce RTX laptop," 29 Jan. 2019 The future member of the Sussex family is expected to arrive this spring, and the Internet can hardly wait. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Royal Baby: Everything We Know," 24 Jan. 2019

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 1

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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Statistics for expect

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for expect

The first known use of expect was in 1560

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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.
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

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More from Merriam-Webster on expect

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with expect

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for expect

Spanish Central: Translation of expect

Nglish: Translation of expect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expect for Arabic Speakers

Comments on expect

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