- Hesitate is defined as to pause before deciding, acting or speaking.
An example of to hesitate is to stop before walking into the street.
hesitate definition by Webster's New World
- to stop because of indecision; pause or delay in acting, choosing, or deciding because of feeling unsure; waver
- to pause; stop momentarily
- to be reluctant; not be sure that one should: hesitating to ask
- to pause continually in speaking; stammer
Origin: ; from Classical Latin haesitatus, past participle of haesitare, to stick fast, hesitate, intensive of haerere, to stick, cleave ; from Indo-European base an unverified form ghais-, to be stuck, neglect from source probably Lithuanian gaištù, to neglect
hesitate definition by American Heritage Dictionary
intransitive verb hes·i·tat·ed, hes·i·tat·ing, hes·i·tates
- a. To be slow to act, speak, or decide.b. To pause in uncertainty; waver.
- To be reluctant.
- To speak haltingly; falter.
Origin: Latin haesitāre, haesitāt-, to hesitate, frequentative of haerēre, to hold fast.
- hesˈi·tatˌer noun
- hesˈi·tatˌing·ly adverb