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Origin of hate

First recorded before 900; Middle English hat(i)en,Old English hatian (verb); cognate with Dutch haten,Old Norse hata,Gothic hatan,German hassen

synonym study for hate

1. Hate, abhor, detest, abominate imply feeling intense dislike or aversion toward something. Hate, the simple and general word, suggests passionate dislike and a feeling of enmity: to hate autocracy. Abhor expresses a deep-rooted horror and a sense of repugnance or complete rejection: to abhor cruelty; Nature abhors a vacuum. Detest implies intense, even vehement, dislike and antipathy, besides a sense of disdain: to detest a combination of ignorance and arrogance. Abominate expresses a strong feeling of disgust and repulsion toward something thought of as unworthy, unlucky, or the like: to abominate treachery.


Other definitions for hate (2 of 2)


a combining form describing something that one does but professes to dislike and that may indicate conflicting love/hate emotions, as in hate-read; hate-kiss; hate-sex.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What is a basic definition of hate?

Hate is used as a verb to mean to passionately and intensely dislike something or to dislike or be unwilling. As a noun, hate is used to mean an intense loathing. Hate has a few other meanings as a verb, noun, and adjective.

If someone hates something, they dislike it so intensely that rage or disgust fills their body when they come into contact with it. A person who hates something is called a hater.

  • Real-life examples: Children often hate vegetables. Enemies are people who hate each other. A person who hates dogs never wants to be around them. An environmentalist hates pollution and the destruction of rainforests.
  • Used in a sentence: Mark hates Ashley so much that he won’t even be in the same room as her. 

Hate also means to dislike or be unwilling, usually to do something. This sense of hate implies that a person could be unwilling because of sadness, shame, or doubt rather than animosity.

  • Real-life examples: Children sometimes hate to do chores so much that their parents yell at them. Still, parents often hate to say goodbye when their children grow up and move away from home.
  • Used in a sentence: I hate to say it but I think my mother was right.

Hate is also used as a noun to mean a strong dislike of something. The word hate is the opposite of the word love and is often considered one of the worst things a person can feel.

  • Used in a sentence: The Grinch was consumed by his hate of Christmas. 

Hate is used in a similar sense as an adjective to describe something that is related to or motivated by hate, prejudice, or intolerance.

  • Real-life examples: The Ku Klux Klan is a hate group, meaning the members hate something specific or a specific group of people, in this case chiefly Black people. Social media websites forbid hate speech. An unpopular celebrity is likely to receive hate mail.
  • Used in a sentence: Reading the hate speech about people’s skin color makes me sick.

Where does hate come from?

The first records of hate come from before the 900s. It ultimately comes from the Old English verb hatian and is related to the Dutch haten, the Old Norse hata, and the German hassen.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to hate?

  • hater (noun)
  • hateable (adjective)
  • self-hate (noun)
  • unhated (adjective)
  • unhatingly (adverb)

What are some synonyms for hate?

What are some words that share a root or word element with hate

What are some words that often get used in discussing hate?

How is hate used in real life?

Hate is an extremely common word that means to really, really dislike something. People often complain about things they hate on social media.

Try using hate!

Which of the following words is NOT a synonym of hate?

A. animosity
B. love
C. resentment
D. enmity

How to use hate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for hate

/ (heɪt) /

to dislike (something) intensely; detest
(intr) to be unwilling (to be or do something)
intense dislike
informal a person or thing that is hated (esp in the phrase pet hate)
(modifier) expressing or arousing feelings of hatredhate mail

Derived forms of hate

hateable or hatable, adjective

Word Origin for hate

Old English hatian; related to Old Norse hata, Old Saxon hatōn, Old High German hazzēn
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Other Idioms and Phrases with hate


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.