- to remain inactive or in a state of repose, as until something expected happens (often followed by for, till, or until): to wait for the bus to arrive.
- (of things) to be available or in readiness: A letter is waiting for you.
- to remain neglected for a time: a matter that can wait.
- to postpone or delay something or to be postponed or delayed: We waited a week and then bought the house. Your vacation will have to wait until next month.
- to look forward to eagerly: I'm just waiting for the day somebody knocks him down.
- to continue as one is in expectation of; await: to wait one's turn at a telephone booth.
- to postpone or delay in expectation: Don't wait supper for me.
- Archaic. (of things) to be in readiness for; be reserved for; await: Glory waits thee.
- Archaic. to attend upon or escort, especially as a sign of respect.
- an act or instance of waiting or awaiting; delay; halt: a wait at the border.
- a period or interval of waiting: There will be a long wait between trains.
- the time between two acts, scenes, or the like.
- stage wait.
- waits,(formerly) a band of musicians employed by a city or town to play music in parades, for official functions, etc.
- a street musician, especially a singer.
- one of a band of carolers.
- a piece sung by carolers, especially a Christmas carol.
- Obsolete. a watchman.
- wait on,
- to perform the duties of an attendant or servant for.
- to supply the wants of a person, as serving a meal or serving a customer in a store.
- to call upon or visit (a person, especially a superior): to wait on Her Majesty at the palace.
- Falconry.(of a hawk) to soar over ground until prey appears.
- Chiefly Midland and Southern U.S.to wait for (a person); await.
- Also wait upon.to await (an event).
- wait up,
- to postpone going to bed to await someone's arrival.
- Informal.to halt and wait for another to join one, as in running or walking: Wait up, I can't walk so fast.
- lie in wait, to wait in ambush: The army lay in wait in the forest.
- wait table. table(def 26).
Origin of wait
Synonyms for waitSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Words for waitedlinger, hang, await, watch, stay, delay, remain, expect, foresee, anticipate, tarry, abide, stall, bide, dally
Examples from the Web for waited
Contemporary Examples of waited
By James Joiner Thea Shaheen had waited her whole life for the body she was supposed to be in.Six Must-Read Stories About Gay Mormon Husbands and Iranian Drug Wars
The Daily Beast
January 3, 2015
As we waited for my plane to come in, we stayed silent for a long time.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile
January 3, 2015
Thea Shaheen had waited her whole life for the body she was supposed to be in.The Insurance Company Promised a Gender Reassignment. Then They Made a Mistake.
December 29, 2014
After the last magnet was retrieved, she assumed slave posture and waited for Couple to unclasp the clamps.Dungeons and Genital Clamps: Inside a Legendary BDSM Chateau
December 20, 2014
Often Mick would perch on those back stairs, perusing art books as he waited for her.The Bookstore That Bewitched Mick Jagger, John Lennon, and Greta Garbo
December 16, 2014
Historical Examples of waited
At the head of the stairs they parted, Milbrey joining the lady who had waited for him.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
But as I gather it, after you shot Bill Dozier you simply sat on your horse and waited.
He waited an eternity; in actual time it was exactly ten minutes.
She paused, with a look of expectation, as if she waited for my consenting answer.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
His face had a patient, expectant look, as if he waited for them to do something.Life and Death of Harriett Frean
- (when intr, often foll by for, until, or to) to stay in one place or remain inactive in expectation (of something); hold oneself in readiness (for something)
- to delay temporarily or be temporarily delayedthat work can wait
- (when intr, usually foll by for) (of things) to be in store (for a person)success waits for you in your new job
- (intr) to act as a waiter or waitress
- the act or an instance of waiting
- a period of waiting
- (plural) rare a band of musicians who go around the streets, esp at Christmas, singing and playing carols
- an interlude or interval between two acts or scenes in a play, etc
- lie in wait to prepare an ambush (for someone)
Word Origin for wait
early 13c., "a watcher, onlooker," from Old North French wait, Old French gaite, from gaitier (see wait (v.)). From late 14c. as "an ambush, a trap" (as in lie in wait).
c.1200, "to watch with hostile intent, lie in wait for," from Old North French waitier "to watch" (Old French gaitier, Modern French guetter), from Frankish *wahton (cf. Dutch wacht "a watching," Old High German wahten, German wachten "to watch, to guard;" Old High German wahhon "to watch, be awake," Old English wacian "to be awake;" see wake (v.)). General sense of "remain in some place" is from late 14c.; that of "to see to it that something occurs" is late 14c. Meaning "to stand by in attendance on" is late 14c.; specific sense of "serve as an attendant at a table" is from 1560s. Related: Waited; waiting.
To wait (something) out "endure a period of waiting" is recorded from 1909, originally American English, in reference to baseball batters trying to draw a base on balls. Waiting game is recorded from 1890. Waiting room is attested from 1680s. Waiting list is recorded from 1897; the verb wait-list "to put (someone) on a waiting list" is recorded from 1960.
In addition to the idioms beginning with wait
- wait a minute
- wait and see
- wait at table
- wait for the other shoe to drop
- waiting game
- waiting in the wings
- wait on
- wait on hand and foot
- wait out
- wait up
- can't wait
- hurry up and wait
- in waiting
- lie in wait
- play a waiting game