What is the difference between hope and dream?

hope | dream |

As nouns the difference between hope and dream

is that hope is (uncountable) the belief or expectation that something wished for can or will happen or hope can be a sloping plain between mountain ridges while dream is imaginary events seen in the mind while sleeping.

As verbs the difference between hope and dream

is that hope is to want something to happen while dream is to see imaginary events in one's mind while sleeping.



Etymology 1

From (etyl) hope, from (etyl) .


  • (uncountable) The belief or expectation that something wished for can or will happen.
  • * , chapter=3
  • , title= Mr. Pratt's Patients , passage=My hopes wa'n't disappointed. I never saw clams thicker than they was along them inshore flats. I filled my dreener in no time, and then it come to me that 'twouldn't be a bad idee to get a lot more, take 'em with me to Wellmouth, and peddle 'em out.}}
  • (countable) The actual thing wished for.
  • (countable) A person or thing that is a source of hope.
  • (Christianity) The virtuous desire for future good.
  • * The Holy Bible, 1 Corinthians 13:13
  • But now abideth faith, hope , love, these three; and the greatest of these is love.
    Derived terms
    * Cape of Good Hope * forlorn hope * great white hope * have one's hope dashed * hope against hope * hope chest * hopeful * hopeless * hoper * hope springs eternal * no-hoper * out of hope * overhope * unhope * wanhope

    Etymology 2

    From (etyl) hopen, from (etyl) hopian.


  • To want something to happen, with a sense of expectation that it might.
  • * , chapter=10
  • , title= The Mirror and the Lamp , passage=He looked round the poor room, at the distempered walls, and the bad engravings in meretricious frames, the crinkly paper and wax flowers on the chiffonier; and he thought of a room like Father Bryan's, with panelling, with cut glass, with tulips in silver pots, such a room as he had hoped to have for his own.}}
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2013-06-08, volume=407, issue=8839, page=55, magazine=(The Economist)
  • , title= Obama goes troll-hunting , passage=The solitary, lumbering trolls of Scandinavian mythology would sometimes be turned to stone by exposure to sunlight. Barack Obama is hoping that several measures announced on June 4th will have a similarly paralysing effect on their modern incarnation, the patent troll.}}
  • To be optimistic; be full of hope; have hopes.
  • (obsolete) To place confidence; to trust with confident expectation of good; usually followed by in .
  • * Bible, Psalms cxix. 81
  • I hope in thy word.
  • * Bible, Psalms xlii. 11
  • Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God.
    Usage notes
    * This is a catenative verb that takes the to infinitive . See
    Derived terms
    * hoped for
    See also
    * aspire * desire * expect * look forward * want

    Etymology 3

    Compare Icelandic word for a small bay or inlet.


    (en noun)
  • A sloping plain between mountain ridges.
  • (Scotland) A small bay; an inlet; a haven.
  • (Jamieson)
    (Webster 1913)



    (wikipedia dream)

    Etymology 1

    From (etyl) (m), from (etyl) . The derivation from Old English dr?am'' is controversial, since the word itself is only attested in writing in its meaning of “joy, mirth, musical sound”. Possibly there was a separate word ''dr?am meaning “images seen while sleeping”, which was avoided in literature due to potential confusion with “joy” sense, which would account for the common definition in the other Germanic languages, or the derivation may indeed simply be a strange progression from “mirth, joy, musical sound”.. Attested words for “sleeping vision” in Old English were . The verb is from (etyl) (m), possibly (see above) from (etyl) .


    (en noun)
  • Imaginary events seen in the mind while sleeping.
  • * (John Dryden) (1631-1700)
  • Dreams are but interludes which fancy makes.
  • * (Lord Byron) (1788-1824)
  • I had a dream' which was not all a ' dream .
  • *
  • She wakened in sharp panic, bewildered by the grotesquerie of some half-remembered dream in contrast with the harshness of inclement fact, drowsily realising that since she had fallen asleep it had come on to rain smartly out of a shrouded sky.
  • A hope or wish.
  • *
  • So this was my future home, I thought!Backed by towering hills, the but faintly discernible purple line of the French boundary off to the southwest, a sky of palest Gobelin flecked with fat, fleecy little clouds, it in truth looked a dear little city; the city of one's dreams .
  • * (Martin Luther King)
  • I have a dream' that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. I have a ' dream today!
  • * {{quote-news, year=2012, date=August 5, author=Nathan Rabin
  • , title= TV: Review: THE SIMPSONS (CLASSIC): “I Love Lisa” (season 4, episode 15; originally aired 02/11/1993) , passage=Ralph Wiggum is generally employed as a bottomless fount of glorious non sequiturs, but in “I Love Lisa” he stands in for every oblivious chump who ever deluded himself into thinking that with persistence, determination, and a pure heart he can win the girl of his dreams .}}
  • A visionary scheme; a wild conceit; an idle fancy.
  • * (Alexander Pope) (1688-1744)
  • There sober thought pursued the amusing theme, / Till Fancy coloured it and formed a dream .
  • * (w) (1819-1885)
  • It is not to them a mere dream , but a very real aim which they propose.


    * (events experienced whilst asleep) sweven (archaic)

    Derived terms

    * American dream * daydream * dreamboat * dreamcatcher * dreamland * dreamscape * dream team * dreamy * dream vision * dreamworld * live the dream * lucid dream * pipe dream * wet dream

    See also

    * nightmare


  • (lb) To see imaginary events in one's mind while sleeping.
  • (lb) To hope, to wish.
  • (lb) To daydream.
  • :
  • (lb) To envision as an imaginary experience (usually when asleep).
  • :
  • *(and other bibliographic particulars) (Cowper)
  • *:And still they dream that they shall still succeed.
  • *(and other bibliographic particulars) (Dryden)
  • *:At length in sleep their bodies they compose, / And dreamt the future fight, and early rose.
  • (lb) To consider the possibility (of).
  • :
  • *1599-1602 , (William Shakespeare), (Hamlet) , Act I scene 5, lines 167-8
  • *:There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, / Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
  • *
  • *:But then I had the [massive] flintlock by me for protection. ¶, and a 'bead' could be drawn upon Molly, the dairymaid, kissing the fogger behind the hedge, little dreaming that the deadly tube was levelled at them.
  • Derived terms

    * bedream * dream up * dream on

    Usage notes

    * "Dreamt" is less common in both US and UK English in current usage, though somewhat more prevalent in the UK than in the US. "Drempt" is quite rare, possibly just eye-dialect.