yearn·​ing ˈyər-niŋ How to pronounce yearning (audio)
: a tender or urgent longing
a yearning for justice

Examples of yearning in a Sentence

had a sudden yearning for something sweet
Recent Examples on the Web These candid conversations peel back the layers of one of cinema’s most enduring icons, revealing a woman at odds with her public image, yearning for respect and agency. Brent Lang, Variety, 18 June 2024 By embracing Juneteenth, Americans of all backgrounds can gain a deeper understanding of the Black experience and find common ground in the universal yearning for freedom and equality that defines us as a people. Tribune News Service, Hartford Courant, 17 June 2024 But today, dopamine has become a cultural catch-all, shorthand for focus, yearning, and joy. Celia Ford, Vox, 22 May 2024 After decades of tolerating workaholic culture as the norm, employees are tired, unafraid to show it and yearning to yank back control of their lives. Amy X. Wang, New York Times, 7 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for yearning 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'yearning.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of yearning was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near yearning

Cite this Entry

“Yearning.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a tender or eager longing

More from Merriam-Webster on yearning

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