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English definition of “wish”

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wish

verb uk   /wɪʃ/ us  

wish verb (FEEL SORRY)

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.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.
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wish verb (WANT)

B2 [I or T] formal to want to do something: We could go to the cinema or we could go out for dinner - whatever you wish. "Is it OK if we ask Diana to come to the theatre tonight?" "If/As you wish." [+ to infinitive] I wish to make a complaint. Passengers wishing to take the Kings Cross train should go to platform 9. I don't wish to worry you but he did say he'd be back by midnight. [+ obj + adj ] Sometimes I was so depressed that I wished myself dead.I wish (that)... used to express anger at someone's behaviour: I wish she'd shut up for a moment and let someone else speak. I wish you'd look at me when I'm trying to speak to you!
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wish verb (HOPE)

B1 [T + two objects] to hope or express hope for another person's success or happiness or pleasure on a particular occasion: We wish you every success in the future. I didn't even see her to wish her a happy birthday/wish a happy birthday to her. I wished her a safe journey and waved her off.wish sb well to hope someone will succeed: I wished him well with his new venture.

wish verb (MAGIC)

[I or T] to hope that something you want will be made real because of good luck or magical powers: [+ that] I remember blowing out the candles on my birthday cake and wishing that John Lee would be my boyfriend. If I could wish myself anywhere in the world (= go anywhere as a result of making a wish) right now it would be somewhere hot and sunny. He's funny, bright, handsome - everything a girl could wish for really. "Your job must be very glamorous." "I wish!" (= not at all.) "By the time I'm 40, I'll be rich." "You wish!" (= There is no chance of that happening.)

wish verb (GREET)

[T] Indian English to welcome someone with particular words or a particular action: He wishes me every morning.
Phrasal verbs

wish

noun [C] uk   /wɪʃ/ us  

wish noun [C] (WANT)

B2 a feeling of wanting something: [+ to infinitive] Did he express any wish to see me? In accordance with his wishes (= what he wanted), he was buried next to his wife. They've deliberately gone against my wishes and sold the apartment. [+ that] It was grandpa's greatest wish that one of his grandchildren would become a doctor.
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wish noun [C] (GREETING)

wishes A2 something you say or write at the end of a letter, etc. to show that you hope someone is happy and has good luck: He ended the letter "Best wishes, Carlo". Best wishes for a speedy recovery. With best wishes, Louise Foster. When you see Joyce, please give her my good wishes.

wish noun [C] (MAGIC)

C2 a hope that is made real with magical powers: [+ that] If I could have just one wish I suppose it would be that all the fighting in the world would stop tomorrow. Close your eyes and make a wish. It's that bit in the story where the fairy grants the little girl three wishes. May all your wishes come true.
(Definition of wish from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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