hanker

verb
han·​ker | \ ˈhaŋ-kər How to pronounce hanker (audio) \
hankered; hankering\ ˈhaŋ-​k(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce hankering (audio) \

Definition of hanker

intransitive verb

: to have a strong or persistent desire : yearn often used with for or after

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hanker

hankerer \ ˈhaŋ-​kər-​ər How to pronounce hankerer (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for hanker

long, yearn, hanker, pine, hunger, thirst mean to have a strong desire for something. long implies a wishing with one's whole heart and often a striving to attain. longed for some rest yearn suggests an eager, restless, or painful longing. yearned for a stage career hanker suggests the uneasy promptings of unsatisfied appetite or desire. always hankering for money pine implies a languishing or a fruitless longing for what is impossible. pined for a lost love hunger and thirst imply an insistent or impatient craving or a compelling need. hungered for a business of his own thirsted for power

Examples of hanker in a Sentence

By the middle of the winter, they were hankering for a warm day.
Recent Examples on the Web The classic perception of posh old men in red trousers hankering for the good old days misses the point. Luke Mcgee, CNN, "The UK's next prime minister will be chosen by 0.2% of the nation," 6 July 2019 Delaware Dover: The deadline is nigh for anyone hankering to be the state’s chief justice. USA TODAY, "Disney surprise, foreign feral hogs, porous pavement: News from around our 50 states," 13 Sep. 2019 This is not the first time that highly qualified individuals have hankered after low-paying jobs in India. Manavi Kapur, Quartz India, "An IIT post-graduate has turned down high-paying jobs to become a railway track maintainer," 27 Aug. 2019 Here’s hoping our children and grandchildren will be smarter the next time the Broncos come around, with a hankering to build a new stadium. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, "Kickin’ It with Kiz: Did it require prodding from Uncle Vic Fangio for John Elway to admit his past NFL draft sins?," 7 Sep. 2019 Gaunt and weather-beaten, the 32-year-old Raulino is hankering for a cigarette, coffee, and a meal. Deanna Pan, BostonGlobe.com, "A day at South Station: A gateway to Boston, an intersection of many different lives," 17 Aug. 2019 That still wasn't enough to satisfy Americans' hankering for slow-cooked brisket. Sarah Min, CBS News, "Brisket prices soar on growing appetite for barbecue," 2 Aug. 2019 With their second daughter packing off for college this fall, a couple in their early 50s hankered for a whole new lifestyle. courant.com, "Smart Moves: Find a neighborhood that supports your ideal lifestyle," 1 Aug. 2019 To chase those aspirations, Cleveland refurbished its bench with champions like Kendrick Perkins and Mike Miller, rather than replenishing its roster with hungry veterans still hankering for that first taste of a deep postseason run. Jake Fischer, SI.com, "How David Griffin Rebuilt the Pelicans and His World," 1 Aug. 2019

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

1627, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hanker

probably from Dutch dialect hankeren

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hanker

Statistics for hanker

Last Updated

11 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for hanker

The first known use of hanker was in 1627

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hanker

hanker

verb
How to pronounce hanker (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hanker

informal + old-fashioned : to have a strong or constant desire for something

hanker

verb
han·​ker | \ ˈhaŋ-kər How to pronounce hanker (audio) \
hankered; hankering

Kids Definition of hanker

: to have a great desire I'm hankering for chocolate.

More from Merriam-Webster on hanker

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hanker

Spanish Central: Translation of hanker

Comments on hanker

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

WORD OF THE DAY

the exactly right word or phrasing

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • rotelle pasta
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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