cher·​ish ˈcher-ish How to pronounce cherish (audio)
cherished; cherishing; cherishes

transitive verb

: to hold dear : feel or show affection for
cherished her friends
: to keep or cultivate with care and affection : nurture
cherishes his marriage
: to entertain or harbor in the mind deeply and resolutely
still cherishes that memory
cherishable adjective
ˈcher-i-shər How to pronounce cherish (audio)
Choose the Right Synonym for cherish

appreciate, value, prize, treasure, cherish mean to hold in high estimation.

appreciate often connotes sufficient understanding to enjoy or admire a thing's excellence.

appreciates fine wine

value implies rating a thing highly for its intrinsic worth.

values our friendship

prize implies taking a deep pride in something one possesses.

Americans prize their freedom

treasure emphasizes jealously safeguarding something considered precious.

a treasured memento

cherish implies a special love and care for something.

cherishes her children above all

Example Sentences

a book cherished by many I will always cherish that memory.
Recent Examples on the Web That is hardly surprising, since members of Congress cherish their immunity under the Speech and Debate Clause, not to mention the First Amendment. Thomas Geoghegan, The New Republic, 6 Jan. 2023 That backdrop sparked a question about how the events of the week could make the two cherish their accomplishments and health — both had 12-year careers in the NFL — even more. Dallas News, 5 Jan. 2023 Tons of people—myself included—cherish their alone time at the gym. Christa Sgobba, SELF, 5 Jan. 2023 Furthermore, the merch universe is finding a whole new iteration in Web3, with NFTs and other collectibles adding a whole new level of personalization for fans who cherish a feeling of closeness to their heroes. Jenny Ta, Rolling Stone, 26 Dec. 2022 With his former flame Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek) and new pup friend Perro (Harvey Guillén) joining in on the race to grab the wish, Puss learns how to cherish his one precious life by making a new friend, or burying the hatchet with Kitty. Katie Walsh, Los Angeles Times, 20 Dec. 2022 However, players involved from both sides always seemed to cherish the big-game atmosphere and opportunity to play on the Houston Texans' home turf. Josh Criswell, Chron, 19 Dec. 2022 Heartbreak still could happen on Sunday but this was a night to cherish. John Powers,, 13 Dec. 2022 No one can resist an adorable photo of a baby, so slip your favorite shot of your little one into a personalized frame for your godfather to cherish forever. Annie O'sullivan, Woman's Day, 1 Dec. 2022 See More

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

Word History


Middle English cherisshen, from Anglo-French cheriss-, stem of cherir to cherish, from cher dear, from Latin carus — more at charity

First Known Use

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

Time Traveler
The first known use of cherish was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near cherish

Cite this Entry

“Cherish.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


cher·​ish ˈcher-ish How to pronounce cherish (audio)
: to hold dear : feel or show affection for
cherished her friends
: to keep with care and affection : nurture
cherishes her friendship
: to harbor in the mind
cherish a hope

More from Merriam-Webster on cherish

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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