Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To have a strong, often restless desire.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To crave, want or desire.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To long (for) with a keen appetite and uneasiness; to have a vehement desire; -- usually with for or after
  • intransitive v. To linger in expectation or with desire.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To long or yearn keenly and with uneasiness; have an uneasy craving: usually followed by after or for.
  • To linger with expectation; hang about.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. desire strongly or persistently

Etymologies

Perhaps from Dutch dialectal hankeren; see konk- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • Gentle reader, if you have never been in battle or captured by robbers, you needn't "hanker" for the experience, but take it as you would your clothing, "second hand."

    Shakspere, Personal Recollections

  • And look o'er the field -- yes! and "hanker" for more.

    The Use and Need of the Life of Carry A. Nation

  • The solitude appealed to her sense of freedom; she did not "hanker" after a society she had never known.

    Mr. Jack Hamlin's Mediation

  • So does he now hanker for the life he left behind?

    Hugh Muir's diary

  • Much as neurosurgeons might hanker after white coats with an exceedingly long train (borne through corridors and into the operating theater by respectful junior registrars), most people would regard such a thing as perverse.

    Archive 2009-05-01

  • I can rustle up an eight-course Indian meal after a week of cooking, my bhangra dance steps are starting to resemble the real thing, and I hanker after Shahrukh Khan rather than George Clooney.

    India In Chicago: A Guide To Devon Avenue

  • Oh, I was never afraid of them, believe muh, but I didn't hanker after 'em.

    CHAPTER XI

  • Yes, strange sort of a chap. Wouldn't hanker to be bunk-mates with him.

    CHAPTER 22

  • Mr. Naimi's statements come as other OPEC members, including Venezuela, Algeria and Libya, hanker after a crude price of $100 a barrel.

    OPEC Talks and Oil Prices Jump

  • And the queens ... well they're queens; they just hanker for a little attention now and again.

    how often do you clean your guns?

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