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English definition of “wish”


verb (FEEL SORRY)    /wɪʃ/
B1 [I + (that)] used with the past simple to express that you feel sorry or sad about a state or situation that exists at the moment: I wish (that) I was/were a bit taller. I wish (that) you were coming with me, Peter.Sadness and regret B1 [I + (that)] used with the past perfect to express that you feel sorry or sad about a particular action in the past: I wish (that) I hadn't eaten so much. I bet she wishes (that) she'd never got involved in the whole affair.Sadness and regret Grammar:WishSee moreGrammar:Wish + to-infinitiveWhen we use wish followed by a verb in the to-infinitive form, wish means the same as want, but it is more formal. We do not normally use wish in the continuous form when we use it with a to-infinitive:See moreGrammar:Wish + indirect object + direct objectWe use wish with two objects, an indirect object + a direct object (underlined), for expressions of good wishes and hopes that good things will happen to people:See moreGrammar:Wish + that-clauseWe use wish with a that-clause when we regret or are sorry that things are not different. We imagine a different past or present:See moreGrammar:Wish + verb forms in the that-clauseThe verb forms we use in that-clauses after wish are similar to the verb forms in conditional clauses after if. We use a past verb form for present and future meanings.See moreGrammar:Wish + wouldWe can use wish + would if we are annoyed about something that is or is not happening, or about something that will or will not happen:See more
(Definition of wish verb (FEEL SORRY) from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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