hesitate

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Latin haesitatus, past participle of haesitare, intensive of haerere (to hesitate, stick fast; to hang or hold fast). Compare aghast, gaze, adhere.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

hesitate (third-person singular simple present hesitates, present participle hesitating, simple past and past participle hesitated)

  1. (intransitive) To stop or pause respecting decision or action; to be in suspense or uncertainty as to a determination.
    He hesitated whether to accept the offer or not; men often hesitate in forming a judgment.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Alexander Pope to this entry?)
  2. (intransitive) To stammer; to falter in speaking.
  3. (transitive, poetic, rare) To utter with hesitation or to intimate by a reluctant manner.

Usage notes[edit]

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Translations[edit]

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External links[edit]