hopeful

adjective
hope·​ful | \ ˈhōp-fəl How to pronounce hopeful (audio) \

Definition of hopeful

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : having qualities which inspire hope hopeful signs of economic recovery
2 : full of hope : inclined to hope

hopeful

noun

Definition of hopeful (Entry 2 of 2)

: aspirant Olympic hopefuls

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hopeful

Adjective

hopefulness noun

Examples of hopeful in a Sentence

Adjective

The mood is sad rather than hopeful. He was hopeful that things would get better soon. I still feel hopeful about the future. She is hopeful of winning the race. a hopeful tone of voice There are hopeful signs that the crisis may end soon. The movie has a hopeful ending. Investigators report that there have been some hopeful developments in the case.

Noun

the three mayoral hopefuls are going to debate on local TV
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Other experts are more hopeful, citing the political fate of Mugabe—who started out as a political prisoner famed for getting three college degrees behind bars, and later rose to lead a liberation movement—as a trend line. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "Robert Mugabe and the Fate of Democracy in Africa," 9 Sep. 2019 Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden doesn’t appear to be too bothered by his multiple gaffes, slip-ups, and sometimes inaccurate stories. Breanna Edwards, Essence, "Biden On Gaffes, Inaccuracies: 'Details Are Irrelevant' To Policy Decisions," 3 Sep. 2019 Like so many home buyers in 2009, Matthew Stein and his wife, Cathy, were hopeful. Boston.com Real Estate, "From creepy to cool: Buyers are finding unusual things hidden in their homes," 28 Aug. 2019 Following a warning that the Mobile Botanical Gardens might be on the brink of a shutdown, its leadership sounded a more hopeful note Monday about solving a funding shortfall. al, "Funding help sought for Mobile Botanical Gardens," 26 Aug. 2019 But this time, Democrats are more hopeful, as Republican state Sen. Peggy Lehner of the Dayton area is a primary co-sponsor of both measures, and state Sen. Stephanie Kunze, a Republican from suburban Columbus, has signed on as a regular co-sponsor. Jeremy Pelzer, cleveland.com, "Ohio House Democrats launch DoSomethingOhio.com to rally support for gun-control bills," 26 Aug. 2019 The news is hopeful from Qatar, where Afghanistan peace efforts are underway, and where both the United States and the Taliban this week indicated a deal might soon be announced on a U.S. troop withdrawal from America’s longest-ever war. Scott Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, "Talking in Qatar, bombing in Kabul. How to explain the Taliban?," 9 Aug. 2019 Some staffers felt hopeful that this would be the beginning of a change in culture. Tara O'reilly, refinery29.com, ""He's Older Than My Grandfather": Westminster's Sexual Harassment Scandal," 23 July 2019 People often remember the time of the moon landing as one of the country’s finest moments, an age when things were simpler, better, more hopeful. Scientific American, "Apollo 11, 50 year anniversary special report," 26 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Presidential hopefuls Senator Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and former vice president Joe Biden faced off again during the second night of the latest Democratic debates on Wednesday. Julyssa Lopez, Glamour, "Joe Biden to Kamala Harris at the Debate: ‘Go Easy on Me, Kid’," 1 Aug. 2019 Democrats, including presidential hopefuls, immediately criticized Mr. Barr’s directive. Katie Benner, New York Times, "U.S. to Resume Executions of Federal Inmates on Death Row," 25 July 2019 But for now, Warren is set to take to the presidential debate stage on July 30, where she’ll be joined by nine other Democratic hopefuls, including Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg. John Paul Brammer, NBC News, "'She/hers': In progressive move, 3 presidential hopefuls add pronouns to their bios," 21 July 2019 Other hopefuls attached to the role included Miles Teller, Harry Styles and Ansel Elgort. Troy L. Smith, cleveland.com, "Here’s the guy playing Elvis Presley in a new biopic," 16 July 2019 The movie is full of stereotypes, actively offensive toward nearly every American subgroup, and occasionally disgusting—at one point, pageant hopefuls, hanging over hotel balconies, vomit pink globs of shellfish en masse. Jia Tolentino, The New Yorker, "“Drop Dead Gorgeous,” Which Is Finally Streaming, Is Possibly My Favorite Movie of All Time," 5 July 2019 Buttigieg, the young presidential hopeful, did not speak those words. Chris Sikich, Indianapolis Star, "'You can't even handle little South Bend': Buttigieg criticized for leaving amid tragedy," 27 June 2019 The China Manned Space Agency selected the projects, which involve scientists from 17 nations, from 42 hopefuls, in a process organized with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA). Elizabeth Gibney, Scientific American, "China Reveals Scientific Experiments for Next Space Station," 19 June 2019 There were a few high schoolers like Joe, some college hopefuls, a woman aiming to become the first female major leaguer, a pair of Japanese pros, and a couple of geezers in their 40s and 50s. Brian Gaffney, WSJ, "The Knuckleballer’s Guide to Life," 18 June 2019

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

Adjective

1568, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1720, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hopeful

Statistics for hopeful

Last Updated

15 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hopeful

The first known use of hopeful was in 1568

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hopeful

hopeful

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of hopeful

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: full of hope : feeling or showing hope
: giving someone feelings of hope

hopeful

noun

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

: a person who hopes to do something

hopeful

adjective
hope·​ful | \ ˈhōp-fəl How to pronounce hopeful (audio) \

Kids Definition of hopeful

1 : full of hope
2 : giving hope : promising a hopeful sign

Other Words from hopeful

hopefully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on hopeful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hopeful

Spanish Central: Translation of hopeful

Nglish: Translation of hopeful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hopeful for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hopeful

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

WORD OF THE DAY

formidable, illustrious, or eminent

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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!