From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishwishwish1 /wɪʃ/ ●●● S1 W1 verb 1 [intransitive, transitive] formalWANT if you wish to do something or you wish to have it done for you, you want to do it or want to have it done SYN likewish to do something I wish to make a complaint. If you wish to discuss this matter further please do not hesitate to contact me. You may leave now, if you wish.(just) as you wish (=used in formal situations to tell someone you will do what they want) ‘I’d like it to be ready by six.’ ‘Just as you wish, sir.’ The cook will prepare whatever you wish.RegisterIn everyday English, people usually say want rather than wish:I want to see the manager.You can go, if you want.2 [transitive]WANT to want something to be true although you know it is either impossible or unlikely → if onlywish (that) I wish I didn’t have to go to work today. I wish that I could afford a new car. He wished Emily were with him. Sometimes I wish I had never been born.• You wish that you could do something: I wish I could speak Spanish. ✗Don’t say: I wish I can speak Spanish. • You wish that something would happen: I wish it would stop raining.I wish you wouldn’t do that.• You wish that you had done something: I wish I had paid more attention in class. She wished she hadn’t said that she was bored.• You wish that you could have done something: I wish I could have seen his face!• In everyday spoken English, you say I wish I was: I wish I was back home in Hong Kong.• In more formal English, especially in American English, you use I wish I were: I wish I were back home in Hong Kong.• I wish I were is often used when talking about things that are impossible: I wish I were you! I wish I were younger.3 [transitive]HAPPY to say that you hope someone will have good luck, a happy life etcwish somebody something We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! We wish them every happiness in their new home. He shook my hand and wished me luck.wish somebody well (=say that you hope that good things will happen to someone) My friends wished me well in my new job.4 → I couldn’t wish for a nicer/better etc ...5 → I wish (that) somebody would do something6 [intransitive] a) to want something to happen or to want to have something, especially when it seems unlikely or impossible → long forwish for It was no use wishing for the impossible. She was like the sister I never had but always wished for. b) to silently ask for something you want and hope that it will happen by magic or good luck – used especially in children’s storieswish for One day she found a magic ring that brought her whatever she wished for.7 → I wish!8 → you wish!9 → wouldn’t wish something on/upon somebody10 → I don’t wish to interfere/be nosy etc11 → I (only) wish I knew → wish something ↔ away→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpuswish• He can blast a race open whenever he wishes.• Anyone wishing to order the book should send a cheque to the publishers.• Everyone has the right to smoke if they wish, but not the right to ruin the health of those around them.• I wish I didn't have to go to school.• I wish I had a car like that.• Beth wished she could stay there forever.• Afterward, Violet wished she hadn't said anything.• I wish they would turn that music down.• He did not wish to appear on the terrasse of the Continental at such an early hour.• He did not wish to love one more than the next.• I wish to purchase a second house in the UK for investment purposes.• I may therefore not have heard points made to which I wish to refer.• Every country wishes to see its own sportsmen and sportswomen as international champions.• Eventually, once he has them firmly under his rounded arm, he wishes us farewell.wish to do something• This is unlikely to deter parents wishing to start a family at a more mature age than usual.• In other words, while the original does not communicate what the speaker wished to communicate, the reformulation does.• What he wishes to do is to establish through everyday occurrences the realization within you of his existence.• Below are some points which you may wish to include in your application form.• A case-study involves the in-depth study of a single example of whatever it is that the sociologist wishes to investigate.• If you wish to join the tour, please be at the Box Office by 10am.• The police wish to question him about the fire.• I wish to report a robbery.• Rather than any theory of civilizations, therefore, we must study real instances if we wish to understand what civilization is.• You can repeat this option for each range of Assessors that you wish to view.wish (that)• Not wishing to appear stupid or ill-informed in front of patients and colleagues.• So now is the time to get over wishing that that were not the case.• I only wish Becker had taken questions from the audience.• I wish I could play the piano like that!• I wish I'd got some cos I could really do with a hot drink.• She wished that Ben would come home.• One wishes to see the entire full-length feature, to get a more complete sense of their lives.• I do not wish to treat friendships daintily, but with roughest courage.• If you believe you can return to this reality whenever you wish, you will.wish somebody something• Wish me luck!• She called to wish me a happy birthday.wish for• As North pointed out, these objectives were almost universally wished for.• I couldn't have been happier: there was nothing else I could wish for.• We hunted for mushrooms, boiled them in water, ate the glutinous mass slowly, wishing for salt.• The fisherman apologized for bothering him and then told the fish about the wish for a cottage.• But it was different to wish for calm and to be caught in calm.• Why did he sit there in that most sociable of settings, solitary and apparently with neither need nor wish for company?• I make a wish for time: time, time, time; for timelessness. 2.wishwish2 ●●● S3 noun [countable] 1 WANTa desire to do something, to have something, or to have something happenwish of It’s important to listen to the wishes of the patient.wish to do something Despite her wish to continue working, she was forced to retire at the age of 62. → death wish2 ASK FOR something/ASK somebody TO DO somethinga silent request for something to happen as if by magic Close your eyes and make a wish.3 → against somebody’s wishes4 → best/good/warmest etc wishes5 → have no wish to do something6 → your wish is my commandCOLLOCATIONSverbsmake a wish (=silently ask for something that you want to happen)He blew out the candles and made a wish.get/have your wish (=get what you want)She wanted him to leave, and she got her wish. grant/fulfil somebody's wish (=give someone what they want)His parents would now be able to grant his wish.express a wishHe expressed a wish to go to the United States.respect somebody’s wishes (=do what someone wants)We have to respect his wishes.ignore somebody’s wishesIt is important not to ignore the wishes of the patient.phrasessomebody's wish comes trueHis wish came true when he was called up to play for England.adjectivessomebody’s greatest/deepest wish (also somebody’s dearest wish British English) (=what they want most of all)Her greatest wish was to see her parents again.somebody’s last/final/dying wishHer last wish was to be buried in her husband’s grave.a fervent wish (=a strong wish)To die for Ireland was the fervent wish of every true patriot.adverbscontrary to somebody's wishes (=against what someone has said they want)Contrary to her parents' wishes, she decided not to go to university.in accordance with somebody's wishes formal (=following what someone wants)In accordance with his wishes, he was buried next to his first wife.
Examples from the Corpuswish• She always wanted to see her grandchildren again - it was her dearest wish• On his birthday, Max gets his wish that his dad will stop lying for one day.• Still I approve of his wish that the next time round he will become a woman so that he can bear children.• Here, in the regressive, infantile wish for the perfect parent of early childhood lies the germ of the police state.• His last wish was that his body should be buried in his home town.• This month, my wish has been granted.• Several correspondents have written to me at different times expressing the wish that we join forces in order to become more effective.• Consequently, the parents often seize on anything as a portent which confirms their wishes.• She claimed to have been directed, used at all times as an instrument of their wishes, not her own.wish to do something• Nine were more powerfully motivated by a wish to escape from their present job, and expressed relief over leaving it.• At the sculpture class she expressed a wish to carve in hard stone.• She sends good wishes to all her friends and colleagues.• Hard-nosed policemen in unmarked cars belonged to a world of violence and intimidation he had no wish to enter.• A large number wish to continue working as long as they are fit and do not want to retire at the state pension age.• I 9 to be counter-productive in terms of what the Government and the Opposition wish to achieve.• Obviously this creates difficulties when staff wish to arrange extra-curricular activities.• Communication and the wish to communicate are not closely related.make a wish• If I could make a wish, it would be to put Juliette Harris on the board.• He should have made a wish.• I make a wish for time: time, time, time; for timelessness. 2.• As they do it they make a wish, presumably for children.• When she appears, you get to make a wish.• As the singing draws to a close, the cousins urge her to make a wish.• Nowadays we're more likely to make a wish.• Did you make a wish, cara?Origin wish1 Old English wyscan