hopefully

adverb
hope·​ful·​ly | \ ˈhōp-fə-lē \

Definition of hopefully

1 : in a way that expresses desire with an expectation of fulfillment : in a hopeful manner gazed up at us hopefully
2 : it is hoped : I hope : we hope hopefully the rain will end soon

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Can hopefully mean 'I hope'?: Usage Guide

In the 1960s the second sense of hopefully ("it is hoped"), which dates to the early 18th century and had been in fairly widespread use since at least the 1930s, underwent a surge in popularity. A surge of criticism followed in reaction, but the criticism took no account of the grammar of adverbs. Hopefully when used to mean "it is hoped" is a member of a class of adverbs known as disjuncts. Disjuncts serve as a means by which the author or speaker can comment directly to the reader or hearer usually on the content of the sentence to which they are attached. Many other adverbs (such as interestingly, frankly, clearly, luckily, unfortunately) are similarly used; most are so ordinary as to excite no comment or interest whatsoever. The "it is hoped" sense of hopefully is entirely standard.

Examples of hopefully in a Sentence

They gazed up at us hopefully. Hopefully, things will get better soon.

Recent Examples on the Web

In the photos, Kendall holds a blue mug, presumably (or, at least for Kendall's sake, hopefully) full of a steaming hot beverage. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "The Kardashian-Jenner Sisters Are Taking Turns Posing *Almost* Naked in the Snow," 31 Dec. 2018 Astrologically speaking, Jupiter’s motion will be extremely lucky, and hopefully, create positive change. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What Your Sign's November Horoscope Predictions Mean for You," 28 Oct. 2018 The other tactic is to be totally on a mission, getting in and out to snag a particular item as quickly as possible (and hopefully before someone else gets there first). Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "How to Hit the Junkyard," 27 Nov. 2018 Tesla has had boom and bust cycles before The most important thing that will—hopefully—reduce Tesla's cash burn rate is achieving volume production of its Model 3 vehicles. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Tesla’s cash crunch, explained," 26 July 2018 So maybe — hopefully — missing the tournament has forced a necessary level of introspection and evaluation that wouldn’t have occurred if the U.S. had made its usual spirited but limited appearance. Rich Campbell, chicagotribune.com, "Missing World Cup can't be in vain for U.S. men's national team," 13 July 2018 Not only just for my community — and hopefully what that means to be represented and seen — but also for culture. Aisha Harris, New York Times, "Sandra Oh on ‘Killing Eve’ and Her Historic Emmy Nomination," 12 July 2018 So when a car company rolls out some new feature that nobody likes or is hugely confusing or both, the manufacturer can hear about it from real customers and hopefully change course. Aditi Shrikant, Vox, "How James David Power III created the only car ranking company you’ve ever heard of.," 27 Nov. 2018 The site lets shoppers set their own delivery fee and, hopefully, would reward reliability and consistency. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "Instacart changes how it pays shoppers, but many say they’re now making less," 18 Nov. 2018

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

1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for hopefully

Last Updated

8 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hopefully

The first known use of hopefully was in 1593

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More Definitions for hopefully

hopefully

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of hopefully

: in a hopeful manner

: it is hoped : I hope : we hope

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More from Merriam-Webster on hopefully

Spanish Central: Translation of hopefully

Nglish: Translation of hopefully for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hopefully for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hopefully

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