\ ˈhōp How to pronounce hope (audio) \
hoped; hoping

Definition of hope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to cherish a desire with anticipation : to want something to happen or be true hopes for a promotion hoping for the best I hope so.
2 archaic : trust

transitive verb

1 : to desire with expectation of obtainment or fulfillment I hope she remembers. hopes to be invited
2 : to expect with confidence : trust Your mother is doing well, I hope.
hope against hope
: to hope without any basis for expecting fulfillment



Definition of hope (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : desire accompanied by expectation of or belief in fulfillment came in hopes of seeing you also : expectation of fulfillment or success no hope of a cure when they were young and full of hope
b : someone or something on which hopes are centered our only hope for victory
c : something desired or hoped for great hopes for the coming year
2 archaic : trust, reliance

Other Words from hope


hoper noun

Synonyms for hope

Synonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for hope


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 hope in a Sentence

Verb No one knows yet if anyone survived the crash. At this point, we can only hope. I hope you're feeling better soon. That's what she hoped would happen. Let's hope that the strike ends soon. I hope I haven't bored you. Everyone in your family is well, I hope. Noun When they started their life together, they were young and full of hope. Rescuers have not yet abandoned hope that more survivors will be found. The drug has brought hope to thousands of sufferers. We allowed ourselves to entertain hopes that the crisis would end soon. The goal raised the hopes of the team. The hope is that there will be a settlement soon. The lawyers do not want to raise false hopes of an early settlement. He told them the truth with the hope that they would understand. He had little hope of attending college. The latest reports hold out hope for a possible end to this crisis. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Where: One project is in Hillcrest and organizers hope to add one more site. San Diego Union-Tribune, 25 Sep. 2022 Regardless, the announcement was enough to rile up fans of the R&B singer, who hope her primetime appearance means a new album is finally on the way. Thania Garcia, Variety, 25 Sep. 2022 The Federal Reserve board's trio of 2022 interest rate hikes has made borrowing harder for companies that want to grow, and for consumers — particularly those who hope to own a home. CBS News, 24 Sep. 2022 For decades, Israel and Lebanon have been locked in non-direct negotiations, mostly with the help of U.S. mediators, over an 860-square-kilometer area of the sea that both countries hope to explore for oil and gas resources. Ruth Marks Eglash, Fox News, 24 Sep. 2022 After Taylor Pendrith gave the International team hope with a birdie on the 18th hole, Homa matched him with another 12-foot birdie putt for the win. BostonGlobe.com, 23 Sep. 2022 Sunday, the teams will square off at Raymond James Stadium, the Bucs looking to improve to 3-0 while the Packers hope to leave Florida with the clubs deadlocked at 2-1. Nate Davis, USA TODAY, 23 Sep. 2022 Linton said while the festival is primarily aimed toward people from the metro area, organizers hope to draw attention from people visiting the area's distilleries. Jason Gonzalez, The Courier-Journal, 23 Sep. 2022 The Ravens have to hope their secondary is healthier this week. Childs Walker, Baltimore Sun, 23 Sep. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Our hope is that with Bilt, the act of paying rent now enables their next vacation, workout class, or even a pathway to their future home. Rachel King, Fortune, 27 Sep. 2022 Park said their hope is that the handbook is used as a guide for schools’ curricula, a general outline for important topics. Darcel Rockett, Chicago Tribune, 26 Sep. 2022 My hope for love is diminishing and causing low self-esteem. Meredith Goldstein, BostonGlobe.com, 25 Sep. 2022 Their hope was restored last week after a Baltimore judge vacated his conviction and an unshackled Syed descended the courthouse steps downtown, surrounded by a crowd of cheering supporters, and went home to his parents after 23 years behind bars. Lea Skene, Baltimore Sun, 25 Sep. 2022 In between songs, John spoke to the audience about his hope to help eradicate the virus by 2030. Adela Suliman, Washington Post, 24 Sep. 2022 Her hope is that the magazine, while filled with pretty interior images, will be more than an item to sit on a coffee table. Mackenzie Schmidt, Peoplemag, 23 Sep. 2022 But for the first time in six years, every one of the questions that were hurled the Mets' way came with an answer underlined with a degree of hope and optimism. Andrew Tredinnick, USA TODAY, 20 Sep. 2022 His hope is a professional team can properly excavate, restore, and protect the mosaic. Fares Akram, The Christian Science Monitor, 20 Sep. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of hope


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for hope

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English hopian; akin to Middle High German hoffen to hope

Learn More About hope

Time Traveler for hope

Time Traveler

The first known use of hope was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near hope

hop clover



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for hope

Last Updated

29 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Hope.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hope. Accessed 4 Oct. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for hope


\ ˈhōp How to pronounce hope (audio) \
hoped; hoping

Kids Definition of hope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to desire especially with expectation that the wish will be granted I hope she remembers I'm coming.



Kids Definition of hope (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : desire together with the expectation of getting what is wanted
2 : a chance or likelihood for something desired There isn't much hope of winning.
3 : something wished for My hope is that we'll all do well.
4 : someone or something that may be able to help You're our last hope.

Hope biographical name (1)

\ ˈhōp How to pronounce Hope (audio) \

Definition of Hope

 (Entry 1 of 4)

Anthony — see Sir Anthony Hope hawkins


biographical name (2)

Definition of Hope (Entry 2 of 4)

Bob 1903–2003 originally Leslie Townes Hope American (British-born) comedian


biographical name (3)

Definition of Hope (Entry 3 of 4)

Victor Alexander John 1887–1951 2nd Marquis of Linlithgow \ lin-​ˈlith-​(ˌ)gō How to pronounce Hope (audio) \ British soldier; viceroy of India (1936–43)


geographical name

Definition of Hope (Entry 4 of 4)

city in southwestern Arkansas that was the childhood home of President Bill Clinton population 10,095

More from Merriam-Webster on hope

Nglish: Translation of hope for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hope for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hope


Test Your Vocabulary

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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