Definition of wish noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//wɪʃ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//wɪʃ//
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  1. 1  [countable] a desire or a feeling that you want to do something or have something wish (to do something) She expressed a wish to be alone. He had no wish to start a fight. His dearest wish (= what he wants most of all) is to see his grandchildren again. wish for something I can understand her wish for secrecy. wish that… It was her dying wish that I should have it.
  2. 2  [countable] a thing that you want to have or to happen to carry out somebody’s wishes I'm sure that you will get your wish. She married against her parents' wishes. see also death wish
  3. 3  [countable] an attempt to make something happen by thinking hard about it, especially in stories when it often happens by magic Throw some money in the fountain and make a wish. The genie granted him three wishes. The prince's wish came true.
  4. 4  wishes [plural] wish (for something) used especially in a letter or card to say that you hope that somebody will be happy, well or successful We all send our best wishes for the future. Give my good wishes to the family. With best wishes (= for example, at the end of a letter)
  5. Word OriginOld English wȳscan, of Germanic origin; related to German wünschen, also to wont.Extra examples Draw up a wish list, defining the requirements for your ideal home. Every good wish for your future happiness together. Freud’s theory of the death wish Give my best wishes to Alison. He was denied his dying wish to be reconciled with his son. Her father will not speak to her, because she married against his wishes. I have no wish to cause any trouble among them. If you’re the one who finds the hidden box, you get a wish. In accordance with his wishes, his ashes were scattered at sea. In his wish to be as helpful as possible, he was forever asking her what she wanted. It is vital for schools to respect the wishes of parents. Lo and behold, on Christmas Day their wishes came true. She eventually went against her family’s wishes and published her autobiography. She flew into a rage if the staff didn’t obey her wishes. She fulfilled her deepest wish when she flew solo for the first time. She has expressed a wish to seek asylum here. She has expressed a wish to visit the Houses of Parliament. She’s always wanted to be an actress, and I’m sure she’ll get her wish. Thanks to all those who sent well wishes. The Government blatantly ignored the wishes of the public. The change to the constitution reflects the wishes of the people who voted in the referendum. The committee rode roughshod over the wishes of union members. The good fairy granted her three wishes. We need to update our equipment if we are to meet customers’ wishes. When you see a black cat, you have to make a wish. With best wishes for a happy birthday. a wish for peace the child’s detention against parental wishes He refused to carry out her wishes. His dearest wish is to see his grandchildren again. I’m sure that you will get your wish. She married against her parents’ wishes.Idioms
    if wishes were horses, beggars would/might ride
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    (saying) wishing for something does not make it happen
    your wish is my command
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    (humorous) used to say that you are ready to do whatever somebody asks you to do
    the wish is father to the thought
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    (saying) we believe a thing because we want it to be true
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: wish