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

Definition of hope

 (Entry 1 of 6)

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 6)

1 archaic : trust, reliance
2a : 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 (see hope entry 1) for great hopes for the coming year


biographical name (1)
\ ˈhōp How to pronounce Hope (audio) \

Definition of Hope (Entry 3 of 6)

Anthony — see Sir Anthony Hope hawkins


biographical name (2)

Definition of Hope (Entry 4 of 6)

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


biographical name (3)

Definition of Hope (Entry 5 of 6)

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


geographical name

Definition of Hope (Entry 6 of 6)

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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hope


hoper noun

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


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.


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

The company’s hope for the theater includes a food service, a small number of screens with reclining seats and the ability to purchase tickets and reserve space from a phone app. Jennifer Bolton, Houston Chronicle, "Bellaire Place proposal heads to second Planning and Zoning meeting," 15 July 2019 Organisers hope that by then more than 4m visitors a year will be enjoying Museum Island’s riches in comfort. C.g. | Berlin, The Economist, "Berlin’s Museum Island gets a much-needed revamp," 12 July 2019 Back when Jeff Bezos was trying to get a scrappy startup called Amazon off the ground, the best the entrepreneur could hope for, in terms of establishing a beachhead in a consumer’s home, would be to get some space on a bookshelf. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "How Amazon sunk its talons into your home," 12 July 2019 For better and for worse, the Warriors hope to groom Burks, Glenn Robinson III and Alfonzo McKinnie as wing players. Mark Medina, The Mercury News, "Alec Burks details how Paul George trade led to Warriors signing," 12 July 2019 Fiesta and Focus owners watch and hope for the best. Freep.com, "FREE PRESS INVESTIGATION: OUT OF GEAR Ford knew Focus, Fiesta models had flawed transmission, sold them anyway," 11 July 2019 The best to hope for at center is Bismack Biyombo, with rookie Myles Turner backing up. Nat Newell, Indianapolis Star, "What if the Pacers hadn't traded Kawhi Leonard for George Hill in 2011?," 6 July 2019 After 15 years of investigation by people closely connected to Bonham, maybe the best thing anyone can hope for is a fresh set of eyes. CBS News, "Unsolved murder case is the talk of small Texas town 17 years later," 6 July 2019 So please, join us in taking a moment to appreciate Celine Dion making her latest Paris Couture Week appearance with the best accessory choice that anyone could ever hope for. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Please Enjoy Celine Dion Wearing the Necklace From 'Titanic' to Paris Couture Week," 4 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But, if such representation opts to go the way of the multifaceted and incredibly flawed Kat, then there may be hope yet. Clarkisha Kent, EW.com, "Euphoria's Kat is not your stereotypical 'fat best friend'," 17 July 2019 There is some hope for a bump in affordable housing, though. Heather Knight, SFChronicle.com, "Mayor angered it takes so ‘damn long’ to build housing as homelessness spikes," 16 July 2019 If India can just build the institutions to do all that, there will indeed be hope. National Geographic, "India’s water crisis could be helped by better building, planning," 15 July 2019 Given the circumstances, is there any hope that the two of you will get to see it someday — even if no else can? Brian Davids, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Crawl' Star Kaya Scodelario on the 'Skins' Fib That Launched Her Career," 15 July 2019 These brave men, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, know there is no hope for their recovery. NBC News, "Apollo 11: Eleven things you never knew about NASA's landmark moon mission," 14 July 2019 There's still hope of a rebound in the second half of the year. Julia Horowitz, CNN, "Forget earnings. The smart money is looking to the future," 14 July 2019 More oppressive humidity is expected to return during the middle of next week, but there is some hope for relief again by the end of the week. courant.com, "Sunny weekend on tap," 13 July 2019 But Arians is the main hope for an upgrade on the offensive side of the ball, which lost receivers Adam Humphries and DeSean Jackson. 11. Nat Newell, Indianapolis Star, "Ranking the Colts' 2019 opponents," 12 July 2019

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.

See More

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 1

History and Etymology for hope

Verb and Noun

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hope

Dictionary Entries near hope



hop clover




hope chest

Statistics for hope

Last Updated

19 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hope

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hope



English Language Learners Definition of hope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to want something to happen or be true and think that it could happen or be true



English Language Learners Definition of hope (Entry 2 of 2)

: the feeling of wanting something to happen and thinking that it could happen : a feeling that something good will happen or be true
: the chance that something good will happen
: someone or something that may be able to provide help : someone or something that gives you a reason for hoping


\ 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.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on hope

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hope

Spanish Central: Translation of hope

Nglish: Translation of hope for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hope for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hope

Comments on hope

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


to complain fretfully

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


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!