Definition of cherish in US English:



[with object]
  • 1Protect and care for (someone) lovingly.

    ‘he cared for me beyond measure and cherished me in his heart’
    • ‘Through the years I have protected you like a brother, cherished you as a friend, and admired you like a suitor.’
    • ‘It's a natural longing of the human heart to care for and cherish your child.’
    • ‘You were a special treasure to me and I will cherish you forever.’
    • ‘Even if she did love him, he would never cherish her.’
    • ‘Her outreach through her years of service had touched many families in the community and all of them cherished her in a special way.’
    • ‘She deserves a reliable kind of guy, who will love her and cherish her.’
    • ‘She had been married at 14 to a much older man who had loved and cherished her as his wife, and mate.’
    • ‘But I still I cherish him and that feeling doesn't change just because the relationship has changed.’
    • ‘She was devoted to her family and her many friends cherished her in a very special way.’
    • ‘Why couldn't she have someone that would cherish her, and love her for herself?’
    • ‘If you take nothing else from my column this week, have this: cherish your friends, care about them more than your marks.’
    • ‘They had taken her in, loved her, cherished her as their own for that summer.’
    • ‘And I promise to love and to cherish you as long as I live.’
    • ‘She loves and cherishes him in joy and in sorrow.’
    • ‘I couldn't ever deserve him, but Lord knows how much I cherish him and care about him.’
    • ‘Will you honour, love, and cherish them, or will you ignore them like they're ex-girlfriends?’
    • ‘I am, however, relieved to say that I do not instinctively want to protect and cherish her.’
    • ‘Well, I can't do that because I will love, honor and cherish him forever.’
    • ‘He wanted you to trust him, to love him, to cherish him.’
    • ‘Responsible husbands love, protect and cherish their wives.’
    adore, hold dear, love, care very much for, feel great affection for, dote on, be devoted to, revere, esteem, admire, appreciate
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Hold (something) dear.
      ‘I cherish the letters she wrote’
      ‘cherished possessions’
      • ‘They all patently love and cherish the objects entrusted to them by Victorian philanthropists and municipal benefactors.’
      • ‘Then she held the envelope to her bosom as if it were her most cherished possession.’
      • ‘One of society's most cherished beliefs is that the workplace is, or should be, asexual.’
      • ‘As long as these traditions are cherished as an intimate part of their lives then true folklore will never die.’
      • ‘There is hardly any sane human being who can respect and cherish a social union in which his right to freedom of speech and conscience is scoffed at.’
      • ‘It would mean a re-evaluation of some of their most cherished beliefs about the oppressive nature of the traditional, patriarchal family.’
      • ‘But it has flourished, unsurprisingly over the years, to become a much loved and cherished part of the British landscape.’
      • ‘I love and cherish my public holidays because I need that time to recuperate and rejuvenate my mind and body from the rat race of life.’
      • ‘It is fifty years since my art lesson taught me to embrace precious moments and cherish opportunities and to use all the colours.’
      • ‘He was supportive of many local ventures and his wisdom and sound advice was cherished and respected by all who sought his views.’
      • ‘He was a big man who commanded much respect and his advice and wisdom was cherished by those close to the scene.’
      • ‘In a foreign country with no family around him, he cherished close friendships with both sexes.’
      • ‘We hold on to beliefs as if they were cherished possessions, like trinkets that have sentimental value but no practical use.’
      • ‘For a neighbor who cherishes old love letters from her dead husband, Amelie fakes one that was ‘recently found’.’
      • ‘One of the most cherished beliefs of diehard fans is that death metal continues to provide a true musical alternative.’
      • ‘The timeless sea reminded all of us to cherish life instead of destroying it by war.’
      • ‘He bought her the ring one day, knowing that even though he only spent fifty cents on it at a flea market, Zoe would find it precious and cherish it forever.’
      • ‘We have every reason to cherish this precious heritage and continue working on behalf of its future evolution.’
      • ‘And their most cherished possession is a grand piano that spent most of its long life 5,000 miles away.’
      • ‘His style of writing was frequently commented on and his letters were always cherished by those who received them.’
      treasure, prize, value highly, hold dear
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Keep (a hope or ambition) in one's mind.
      ‘he had long cherished a secret fantasy about his future’
      • ‘Her children and grandchildren will cherish her labor of love.’
      • ‘The MCC diaries, however, are testimony to the memories of a carefree youth that he cherished.’
      • ‘Apart from entertaining audiences, David cherishes the thought that he is actually practicing a very important community activity.’
      • ‘You gave us all beautiful memories that we will cherish all the days of our lives.’
      • ‘Their mother left them when he was very little, but the memories he had of her, he cherished.’
      • ‘If these are cherished childhood memories for you, then you might not care for how they're treated here, no matter how tongue in cheek it all is.’
      • ‘They loved and cherished all the little memories that made their beautiful daughter.’
      • ‘We cherish the great sporting memories like we would fine wines.’
      • ‘In the epilogue, Janie cherishes Tea Cake's memory; not only her lover, he has been a cultural mentor and spiritual guide.’
      • ‘He valued the friendships he had made and would cherish very many fond memories.’
      • ‘What are the special memories of Ray that you cherish?’
      • ‘‘The many friends and visitors who called on us over many years are a testament to her and a memory that we will cherish all our lives,’ he stated.’
      • ‘‘Christmas will be a memory that we will cherish forever, as it was such a happy, joyous time,’ Gould said.’
      • ‘While he has given up any hope of her recovering, his wife cherishes the seemingly impossible dream of a miraculous return to health.’
      • ‘Despite all the pain and suffering, the eternal hope that we cherish will win the day.’
      • ‘The few memories that I still had of Jack I cherished, knowing things would never be the same again.’
      harbour, have, possess, hold, hold on to, cling to, entertain, retain, maintain, keep in one's mind, foster, nurture, nurse
      View synonyms


Middle English (in the sense ‘treat with affection’): from Old French cheriss-, lengthened stem of cherir, from cher ‘dear’, from Latin carus.