\ ˈwish How to pronounce wish (audio) \
wished; wishing; wishes

Definition of wish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to have a desire for (something, such as something unattainable) wished he could live his life over
2 : to give expression to as a wish : bid wish them good night
3a : to give form to (a wish)
b : to express a wish for
c : to request in the form of a wish : order
d : to desire (a person or thing) to be as specified cannot wish our problems away
4 : to confer (something unwanted) on someone : foist

intransitive verb

1 : to have a desire : want wishing for more
2 : to make a wish wish on a falling star



Definition of wish (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an act or instance of wishing or desire : want a wish to travel
b : an object of desire : goal
2a : an expressed will or desire : mandate
b : a request or command couched as a wish
3 : an invocation of good or evil fortune on someone

Other Words from wish


wisher noun

Synonyms for wish

Synonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for wish


desire, wish, want, crave, covet mean to have a longing for. desire stresses the strength of feeling and often implies strong intention or aim. desires to start a new life wish sometimes implies a general or transient longing especially for the unattainable. wishes for permanent world peace want specifically suggests a felt need or lack. wants to have a family crave stresses the force of physical appetite or emotional need. craves sweets covet implies strong envious desire. covets his rise to fame

Examples of wish in a Sentence

Verb You may use the telephone, if you wish. She wished them a happy New Year. We wish you a Merry Christmas. Noun He has a wish to be reunited with his son. The genie will grant you three wishes. Send her my good wishes. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Masks will be provided for those who wish to wear them. The Enquirer, 11 Aug. 2022 The water would enable the tribe to build more housing for tribal members who wish to return to the reservation. AZCentral.com, 8 Aug. 2022 On Monday, the last day of early voting, individuals who wish to cast a ballot early must go to the Pulaski County Regional Building, located at 501 W. Markham St., between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Joseph Flaherty, Arkansas Online, 7 Aug. 2022 Those who wish to give tips anonymously should call Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at 317-262-8477, download the P3tips app or go to www. Domenica Bongiovanni, The Indianapolis Star, 7 Aug. 2022 Those who wish to come to our country legally and follow our laws are welcome, but our laws must be respected and border security be made a top priority. Anchorage Daily News, 7 Aug. 2022 Brands looking to partner with student-athletes and donors who wish to make larger one-time donations or multi-year gifts should reach out to the Collective directly. Michelle Gardner, The Arizona Republic, 5 Aug. 2022 From TikTok highlighter hacks to intense contouring, there have never been more techniques to learn for those who wish to sculpt their jaw. Audrey Noble, Allure, 5 Aug. 2022 Users who wish to enable AOD on iPhone 14 will have to go to the Settings app and into the Display & Brightness menu. Chris Smith, BGR, 4 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun This five-year-old had only one wish for her birthday: to spend it with her best friend. Allison Moses, USA TODAY, 13 Aug. 2022 Shura had no wish anymore to argue about the particulars. Sana Krasikov, The New Yorker, 8 Aug. 2022 So far, the couple doesn’t have a special birthday wish. Fox News, 23 July 2022 In addition, 80% of respondents in the same region who already have a loyalty program wish to redo their programs in the coming three years. Zsuzsa Kecsmar, Forbes, 12 July 2022 Komor had her wish granted by her caretakers at the facility in partnership with the Mystic Aquarium in Mystic, Connecticut, and the Twilight Wish Foundation. Alexandra Schonfeld, PEOPLE.com, 3 June 2022 The Salehs had one wish: to escape their $2,050-a-month studio for a bigger apartment in a safer neighborhood. Heather Knight, San Francisco Chronicle, 1 June 2022 Within a few months, Moncrief had her wish when a dog fatally attacked an armadillo close to the initial sighting. Oliver Milman, Wired, 20 Nov. 2021 Since her husband had a longstanding wish to donate his body for research, Saunders connected with a private company to organize a donation: Med Ed Labs of Las Vegas, Nevada. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 12 Nov. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of wish


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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for wish


Middle English wisshen, from Old English wȳscan; akin to Old High German wunsken to wish, Sanskrit vāñchati he wishes, vanoti he strives for — more at win

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Time Traveler for wish

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

14 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Wish.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wish. Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for wish


\ ˈwish How to pronounce wish (audio) \
wished; wishing

Kids Definition of wish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to have a desire for : want I wish you were here.
2 : to form or express a desire concerning He wished them both good luck.
3 : to request by expressing a desire I wish you to go now.



Kids Definition of wish (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of having or expressing a desire usually in the mind Close your eyes and make a wish.
2 : something wanted I got my wish.
3 : a desire for happiness or luck Send them my best wishes.

More from Merriam-Webster on wish

Nglish: Translation of wish for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wish for Arabic Speakers


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