wait1 W1S1 [weıt] v
1¦(not go/start something)¦
2¦(something has not happened)¦
3 wait a minute/second/moment etc
4 somebody can't wait/can hardly wait
5 something can/can't wait
6 wait and see
7 wait until/till ...
8 be waiting (for somebody)
9 wait your turn
10 something is (well) worth waiting for
11 (just) you wait
12 what are you waiting for?
13 what are we waiting for?
14 wait for it
15 be waiting in the wings
16 wait tables
17 (play) a/the waiting game
Phrasal verbs
 wait around
 wait behind
 wait in
 wait on somebody/something
 wait something<=>out
 wait up
[Date: 1100-1200; : Old North French; Origin: waitier 'to watch']
to stay somewhere or not do something until something else happens, someone arrives etc
Hurry up! Everyone's waiting.
Would you mind waiting outside?
wait for
a queue of people waiting for a bus
Wait for me!
wait for sb/sth to do sth
She paused, waiting for Myles to say something.
I sat waiting patiently for the wedding to end.
wait until/till
I'll wait till you come back.
wait (for) 3 hours/2 weeks etc
Can you wait for five minutes?
We've been waiting ages .
wait to do sth
Are you waiting to use the phone?
keep sb waiting
(=make someone wait, especially by arriving late)
I'm sorry to have kept you waiting.
if you are waiting for something that you expect or hope will happen or arrive, it has not happened or arrived yet
'Have you heard about the job?' 'No, I'm still waiting still waiting .'
wait for
I'm still waiting for my results.
wait for sb/sth to do sth
I'm waiting for him to realize how stupid he's been.
3.) wait a minute/second/moment etc
a) used to ask someone not to leave or start doing something immediately
Wait a second, I'll get my coat and come with you.
Wait a moment, just let me think.
b) used to interrupt someone, especially because you do not agree with what they are saying
Wait a minute! That's not what we agreed!
c) used when you suddenly think of, remember, or notice something
Wait a minute, I've got a better idea.
4.) sb can't wait/can hardly wait
a) used to emphasize that someone is very excited about something and is eager for it to happen
We're going to Australia on Saturday - I can't wait!
can't wait to do sth
I can't wait to tell Gloria the good news.
Laura could hardly wait to see the twins again.
somebody can't wait/can hardly wait for
I can't wait for the summer.
b) used humorously to say that something seems likely to be very boring
A lecture on transformational grammar? I can hardly wait!
5.) sth can/can't wait
spoken if something can wait, it is not very urgent. If something can't wait, it is very urgent
Go home. The report can wait till tomorrow.
6.) wait and see
spoken used to say that someone should be patient because they will find out about something later
'What's for dinner?' 'Wait and see.'
We will just have to wait and see how things develop.
7.) wait until/till ...
spoken used when you are excited about telling or showing someone something
Wait till you see Gaby's new house!
8.) be waiting (for sb)
if something is waiting for you, it is ready for you to use, collect etc
There'll be a rental car waiting for you at the airport.
Come round at eight and I'll have dinner waiting .
9.) wait your turn
to stay calm until it is your turn to do something, instead of trying to move ahead of other people
I've got two hands and there are three of you. So you'll have to wait your turn !
10.) sth is (well) worth waiting for
spoken used to say that something is very good, even though it takes a long time to come
Their new album was worth waiting for.
11.) (just) you wait
a) BrE used to warn or threaten someone
I'll get you back for what you've done, just you wait.
b) used to tell someone you are sure something will happen
It'll be a huge success. Just you wait.
12.) what are you waiting for?
spoken used to tell someone to do something immediately
Well, what are you waiting for? Go and apologize.
13.) what are we waiting for?
spoken used to say in a cheerful way that you think everyone should start doing something immediately
What are we waiting for? Let's go eat.
14.) wait for itBrE spoken
a) used just before you tell someone something that is funny or surprising
His name was - wait for it - Mr Bacon.
b) used to tell someone not to do something until the correct time because they seem very impatient to do it now
15.) be waiting in the wings
to be ready to do something if it is necessary or if a suitable time comes
Other firms are waiting in the wings, ready to step in and make an offer should the current deal fall through.
16.) wait tables
AmE to work in a restaurant serving food and drink to people at their tables
I spent the summer waiting tables.
17.) (play) a/the waiting game
if you play a waiting game, you try to gain an advantage for yourself in a particular situation by deliberately doing nothing until you have seen what other people do
wait around phr v
to stay in the same place and do nothing while you are waiting for something to happen, someone to arrive etc
Movie-making involves acting for 10 minutes and then waiting around for two hours.
We'd better be going. We can't wait about like this any longer.
wait behind phr v
to stay somewhere after other people have left
She waited behind to help Debbie with the clearing up.
wait in phr v
to stay at home and wait there for someone to arrive
I have to wait in for the repair man.
wait on / [wait on sb/sth] phr v
1.) to serve food and drink to someone at their table, especially in a restaurant
2.) to wait for a particular event, piece of information etc, especially before doing something or making a decision
We're waiting on the blood test results.
3.) wait on sb hand and foot
to do everything for someone while they do nothing - used to show disapproval
His wife waits on him hand and foot.
wait out [wait sth<=>out] phr v
if you wait out an event, period, or time, especially an unpleasant one, you wait for it to finish
Let's find a place where we can wait out the storm.
wait up phr v
1.) to wait for someone to return before you go to bed
wait up for
Don't wait up for me; I may be late.
2.) Wait up!
AmE used to tell someone to stop, so that you can talk to them or go with them
'Wait up!' he called.
WORD CHOICE: wait, expect, look forward to, await
Wait means to stay somewhere or not do something until something comes, happens etc : I'm waiting to hear from Dan before I arrange my trip.
Expect means to believe that something will come, happen etc : The police are expecting (NOT waiting) trouble.
Look forward to means to be excited and pleased about something that is going to happen : I'm looking forward to getting his letter.
!! Wait is never followed directly by a noun. You must say wait for : She was waiting for a bus (NOT waiting a bus).
In formal English, you can use await , which is followed directly by a noun : We are awaiting your instructions.
wait 2
wait2 n [singular]
a period of time in which you wait for something to happen, someone to arrive etc
wait for
The average wait for an appointment at the clinic was eight weeks.
long/three hour/two week etc wait
There was an hour wait before the next train departed.
They'll have a long wait .
lie in wait atlie1 (8)

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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