\ ˈhənt How to pronounce hunt (audio) \
hunted; hunting; hunts

Definition of hunt

 (Entry 1 of 5)

transitive verb

1a : to pursue for food or in sport hunt buffalo
b : to manage in the search for game hunts a pack of dogs
2a : to pursue with intent to capture hunted the escapees
b : to search out : seek
3 : to drive or chase especially by harrying members … were hunted from their homes— J. T. Adams
4 : to traverse in search of prey hunts the woods

intransitive verb

1 : to take part in a hunt
2 : to attempt to find something
3 : to oscillate alternately to each side (as of a neutral point) or to run alternately faster and slower used especially of a device or machine



Definition of hunt (Entry 2 of 5)

1 : the act, the practice, or an instance of hunting
2 : a group of mounted hunters and their hunting dogs


biographical name (1)
\ ˈhənt How to pronounce Hunt (audio) \

Definition of Hunt (Entry 3 of 5)

(James Henry) Leigh 1784–1859 English writer


biographical name (2)

Definition of Hunt (Entry 4 of 5)

Sir R(ichard) Timothy 1943–     British molecular biologist


biographical name (3)

Definition of Hunt (Entry 5 of 5)

(William) Hol*man \ ˈhōl-​mən How to pronounce Hunt (audio) \ 1827–1910 English painter

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Synonyms for hunt

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of hunt in a Sentence

Verb The wolf was hunting its prey. These birds have been hunted almost to extinction. a gun used for hunting squirrels He likes to hunt and fish. She hunted around in the closet for a pair of shoes. Police hunted the escaped prisoners through several states. Noun They went on a hunt. We finally found a good restaurant after a long hunt.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Did the dinosaur age’s most fearsome predators hunt by themselves, or did tyrannosaurs live cooperatively in groups? Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Dino-mite Utah discovery bolsters theory that T. rexes, like lions, hunted in packs," 19 Apr. 2021 The biologists also hunt for gall crabs that burrow into corals. Kevin Spear,, "Orlando sanctuary nurses largest cluster of Florida corals rescued from a devastating disease," 15 Apr. 2021 Rob, who is an engineer, read books and watched a lot of YouTube videos to learn how to hunt, fish, butcher and process our proteins. Ally Dwyer As Told To Adele Jackson-gibson, Good Housekeeping, "I Didn’t Realize How Much My 9-to-5 Job Was Affecting My Health Until I Quit," 8 Apr. 2021 Children who are 15 years old and younger may hunt turkeys during the youth-only hunting weekend and the general spring season. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky's spring turkey hunting season is on the horizon. Here's what to know," 2 Apr. 2021 Cruz picked up the gun lobby’s argument that instead of disarming law abiding Americans, the administration should hunt down criminals using and selling guns. Paul Bedard, Washington Examiner, "NRA challenges Biden’s clownish gun advice, Kerry’s phantom ‘AR-16’," 30 Mar. 2021 In the event on May 6, void assassin Kha’Zix and his nemesis, a feline creature named Rengar, will hunt and stalk each other, and players get to decide which hunter wins the round. Washington Post, "Everything to know about the new mobile game ‘League of Legends: Wild Rift’," 28 Mar. 2021 And then there’s the subject of Dylan (Jesse LaVercombe), Greta’s husband, who knows how to hunt (and even convinced Greta to eat meat), is full of insinuating looks, and seems to have gotten Greta out from under her sister’s thumb. K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone, "‘Violation’ Is Latest Rape-Revenge Thriller That Seeks to Subvert the Genre," 27 Mar. 2021 Deadly monsters hunt members of an exploration team within a vast network of caverns beneath the Carpathian Mountains. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: ‘An American in Paris’; ‘Ben-Hur’," 26 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The slow rollout has made Africa’s hunt for new variants, which tend to emerge where spread goes unchecked, more urgent. Washington Post, "With an eye on India, Africa ramps up monitoring of coronavirus variants," 9 May 2021 And so began Spencer's hunt for a service with relatable Black content. John General, CNN, "She was tired of seeing Black stereotypes on TV. So she started her own streaming service," 8 May 2021 Learn-to-hunt turkey programs were cancelled again this spring and most wildlife education programming is being held virtually. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "After a COVID interruption in 2020, the DNR is resuming most fish and wildlife field work this spring," 8 May 2021 The hunt will be done on foot at elevations of 8,000 feet or higher, according to the AP. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "45,000 people sign up for a chance to kill 12 bison in the Grand Canyon," 7 May 2021 In the dining room, an 1872 table from a Philadelphia hunt club is ringed by unpretentious 1950s chairs once used in a bank. Jarret Einck, Better Homes & Gardens, "Southern Charm Radiates From This Restored Kentucky Home Inside and Out," 7 May 2021 The area of the park where the hunt will take place, the North Rim, is full of tall ponderosa pine, quaking aspen trees and pools of water. Azi Paybarah New York Times, Star Tribune, "Skilled volunteers have chance to hunt buffalo in Grand Canyon National Park," 7 May 2021 With bonds offering a negative rate of return after stripping out inflation, speculative tech and growth have flourished as investors hunt for yield. Katherine Greifeld, Fortune, "Cathie Wood’s Ark fund takes a beating as tech stocks fall," 7 May 2021 Matt Mallery, an archaeologist in Flagstaff who applied, said using volunteers is cost-effective, logical and provides an opportunity to harvest organic meat that can be cost-prohibitive through the state hunt. NBC News, "Chance to shoot bison at Grand Canyon draws 45,000 applicants," 6 May 2021

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


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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hunt


Middle English, from Old English huntian; akin to Old English hentan to seize

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Learn More about hunt

Time Traveler for hunt

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for hunt

Last Updated

11 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hunt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for hunt



English Language Learners Definition of hunt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to chase and kill (wild animals) for food or pleasure
: to search for something or someone very carefully and thoroughly



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

: an occasion when people hunt wild animals
: an act of searching for something or someone
chiefly British : a group of people who hunt foxes together


\ ˈhənt How to pronounce hunt (audio) \
hunted; hunting

Kids Definition of hunt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to chase after in order to capture or kill hunt deer
2 : to try to find I hunted for my key.

Other Words from hunt

hunting noun



Kids Definition of hunt (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an instance or the practice of chasing to capture or kill
2 : an act of searching

More from Merriam-Webster on hunt

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hunt

Nglish: Translation of hunt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hunt for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hunt

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