Definition of waken in English:



  • no object ‘she knew he would waken in an hour or so’
    another term for wake (sense 1 of the verb)
    with object ‘she wakened the child and dressed her’
    figurative ‘they combined to waken a forgotten and futile hope’
    • ‘With the light nights starting to return, toads across the area are wakening from hibernation to make the journey back to where they were born - to breed.’
    • ‘His alarm clock had failed, and he had not wakened until 9.10 am, ten minutes later than the time he was due to start work.’
    • ‘It has wakened memories and bought it all back and I think it would have been emotionally a bit distressing to have gone.’
    • ‘It might not be the famine of biblical proportions which decimated the country in 1984 and which wakened a disbelieving world to the plight of the Ethiopians but unless something is done it is a disaster in the making.’
    • ‘Summer is coming, the temperature is rising, and before you have even fully wakened, your body has already started to feel the heat and humidity.’
    • ‘At 3am on Wednesday morning residents were wakened by the loud noises of thieves pulling the ATM out of the wall with a JCB stolen from a building site.’
    • ‘At 3.30 am they were wakened by the sound of sledgehammers smashing open the double-locked front door.’
    • ‘Sinn Féin wakens this morning under a tidal wave of outrage after the latest developments in the Garda investigation into money laundering.’
    • ‘The owner of one house was wakened in the early hours of Saturday morning by the flames and thankfully was able to raise the alarm and extinguish the fires.’
    • ‘Rob Atkinson, head of the society's wildlife department, said the warmer weather had wakened snakes after a period of inactivity similar to hibernation, and some ventured into rural gardens.’
    • ‘If I hadn't wakened and it had got up to the roof the whole house could have been burned.’
    • ‘As we move ever closer to November, the weather is switching to a uniform foggy grey that wakens memories of my time in Lincolnshire back in the very early sixties.’
    • ‘In my forties, I go to sleep at night, and upon wakening, I find that a month has passed.’
    • ‘I felt, of course, as if she had sat by my bedside and wakened me in time for the anniversary just as I'd sat by her bedside a year ago, unable to bring her out of that last sleep.’
    • ‘Georgie quietly moans, stirs, then wakens with a gasp.’
    • ‘At 3.25 am the male occupant of a house in Greenpark Villa, Rostrevor was wakened by a man demanding money.’
    • ‘Your fruits and flowers, your birds, your tree frogs wakening me every night, man I have to return just for that!’
    • ‘But I started to resent my Mom, expecting her to go away and expecting to be wakened with the sound of breaking glass.’
    • ‘Next morning Lambie wakened in the same ‘canary-yellow Pringle jumper,’ but torn and with scratches on his face, victim of an apparent mugging.’
    • ‘Acute myocardial infarctions have a peak incidence in the first few hours after wakening, suggesting that they may be triggered by abrupt changes in psychological and behavioural status.’
    wake, wake up, waken up, rouse, arouse, bring to, bring around
    wake, wake up, awake, awaken, waken up, rouse, stir, come to, come around
    View synonyms


Old English wæcnan ‘be aroused’, of Germanic origin; related to wake.