Definition for EX-PECT-A'TION

EX-PECT-A'TION, n. [L. expectatio.]

  1. The act of expecting or looking forward to a future event with at least some reason to believe the event will happen. Expectation differs from hope. Hope originates in desire, and may exist with little or no ground of belief that the desired event will arrive. Expectation is founded on some reasons which render the event probable. Hope is directed to some good; expectation is directed to good or evil. The same weakness of mind which indulges absurd expectations, produces petulance in disappointment. Irving.
  2. The state of expecting, either with hope or fear.
  3. Prospect of good to come. My soul, wait thou only on God, for my expectation is from him. Ps. lxii.
  4. The object of expectation; the expected Messiah. Milton.
  5. A state or qualities in a person which excite expectations in others of some future excellence; as, a youth of expectation. Sidney. Otway. We now more generally say, a youth of promise.
  6. In chances, expectation is applied to contingent events, and is reducible to computation. A sum of money in expectation, when an event happens, has a determinate value before that event happens. If the chances of receiving or not receiving a hundred dollars, when an event arrives, are equal; then, before the arrival of the event, the expectation is worth half the money. Encyc.

Return to page 129 of the letter “E”.