Synonym Chooser

How does the verb expect contrast with its synonyms?

The words hope and look are common synonyms of expect. While all three words mean "to await some occurrence or outcome," expect implies a high degree of certainty and usually involves the idea of preparing or envisioning.

expects to be finished by Tuesday

When would hope be a good substitute for expect?

The meanings of hope and expect largely overlap; however, hope implies little certainty but suggests confidence or assurance in the possibility that what one desires or longs for will happen.

hopes to find a job soon

When is it sensible to use look instead of expect?

The words look and expect can be used in similar contexts, but look, with to, implies assurance that expectations will be fulfilled; with for it implies less assurance and suggests an attitude of expectancy and watchfulness.

looks to a tidy profit from the sale
look for rain when the wind shifts to the northeast

Thesaurus Entries Near expect

Cite this Entry

“Expect.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/expect. Accessed 25 Mar. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on expect

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