• synonyms


[wish-fuh l]
  1. having or showing a wish; desirous; longing.
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Origin of wishful

First recorded in 1515–25; wish + -ful
Related formswish·ful·ly, adverbwish·ful·ness, nounun·wish·ful, adjectiveun·wish·ful·ly, adverbun·wish·ful·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wishfully

Historical Examples of wishfully

  • The peach looked so tempting that Nannie looked at it wishfully.

    Nanny Merry


  • The pretty boy stood there indeed, looking in modestly and wishfully.

    The Pot of Gold

    Mary E. Wilkins

  • They were, in fact, more than prepared; they were wishfully expectant, and Nicholas fell into a very neatly baited trap.

    The Vintage

    Edward Frederic Benson

  • He looked at me most wishfully, and began talking cat language, and I knew he was saying, "Please put Tricksey back on the floor."

  • Manabozho looked on wishfully to see them eat till they were fully satisfied, and they left him nothing but the bare bones.

British Dictionary definitions for wishfully


  1. having wishes or characterized by wishing
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Derived Formswishfully, adverbwishfulness, noun
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

Word Origin and History for wishfully



1520s, from wish (n.) + -ful. Related: Wishfully; wishfulness. Wishful thinking is recorded from 1932.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper