Definition of prospect in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpräˌspekt/


1The possibility or likelihood of some future event occurring: there was no prospect of a reconciliation training that offered a prospect of continuous employment
More example sentences
  • Other workers will view the prospect with horror.
  • Of course there are moments where you are lulled temporarily into a false sensation of hope at the prospect of viewing a quality film.
  • Such is the scepticism with which many view the prospect.
likelihood, hope, expectation, anticipation, (good/poor) chance, odds, probability, possibility, promise;
fear, danger
1.1 [in singular] A mental picture of a future or anticipated event: this presents a disturbing prospect of one-party government
More example sentences
  • It was, though, only when our tutor allowed himself a little self-satisfied smile at the prospect of the future triumph of behaviourism that he felt sufficiently moved to speak.
  • But the reality is that women face a multitude of problems when deciding if and when to have a family, despite the prospect of a childless future glaring at them from newspaper headlines.
  • It dreads the prospect of a future where more and more wagering ends up with non-fee paying operators ‘leeching’ off racing.
vision, thought, idea;
task, undertaking
1.2 (usually prospects) Chances or opportunities for success or wealth: the poor prospects for the steel industry
More example sentences
  • By aligning the owners' aspirations with those of their emerging management team, the prospects of future success are greatly increased.
  • The finality of death of a young man with glowing prospects for success is a shattering blow indeed.
  • In many cases, an alternative to a representational model will offer the best prospects for success.
possibilities, potential, promise, expectations, outlook
2A person regarded as likely to succeed or as a potential customer, client, etc. clients deemed likely prospects for active party membership a great young pitching prospect
More example sentences
  • Around the time, many small business prospects, customers and clients will dwell on cost.
  • The idea would be that a company links to its customers and potential prospects.
  • The two largest potential groups of likely prospects for the certificate program include law enforcement officers and nurses.
candidate, possibility
informal catch
2.1A place likely to yield mineral deposits.
Example sentences
  • These days, there are fewer places to drill, and the best exploration prospects take more capital to tap.
  • It also has several exploration prospects near existing fields.
  • He said Government was doing the mapping exercise as a basic way of exploring minerals at various mining prospects.
2.2A place being explored for mineral deposits.
3An extensive view of landscape: a viewpoint commanding a magnificent prospect of the estuary
More example sentences
  • The other two views take in turn prospects from the east and the west which are altogether more familiar to us.
  • In La Puce, the topographical prospects, or views, include the female body as well as the city.
  • Certain vantages are more than the means of visual control and possession of the land viewed; they themselves become desirable for their commanding prospects.
view, vista, outlook, perspective, panorama, aspect, scene;
picture, spectacle, sight


[no object]
1Search for mineral deposits in a place, especially by means of experimental drilling and excavation: the company is also prospecting for gold
More example sentences
  • On the other hand, imagine how a middle manager in an oil company would respond to emailers complaining about how the company was prospecting for oil and marketing itself.
  • The argument that the Russians are successfully prospecting for oil in unlikely places is dubious at best.
  • He later flew in New Guinea, where he established an airline, prospected for oil, and ran a pearling boat.
search, look, explore, survey, scout, hunt, reconnoiter, examine, inspect
1.1 (prospect for) Look out for; search for: the responsibilities of salespeople to prospect for customers
More example sentences
  • The birds prospecting for nesting sites were most attracted to areas where other birds had large broods of robust infants.



Pronunciation: /ˈpräˌspektər/
Pronunciation: /prəˈspektər/
Example sentences
  • In 1890 more than 30,000 prospectors made the hazardous journey up the Chikoot Trail in a bid to claim their stake in more than $250 million worth of gold.
  • Puerto Jimenez, the peninsula's capital, was until very recently an illegal gold town, set up by prospectors needing supplies to explore the untouched jungle interiors.
  • Then in the 1860s mineral prospectors and railroad surveyors began to disturb them.


Late Middle English (as a noun denoting the action of looking toward a distant object): from Latin prospectus 'view', from prospicere 'look forward', from pro- 'forward' + specere 'to look'. Early use, referring to a view of landscape, gave rise to the meaning 'mental picture' (mid 16th century), whence 'anticipated event'.

Words that rhyme with prospect

affect, bisect, bull-necked, collect, confect, connect, correct, defect, deflect, deject, detect, direct, effect, eject, elect, erect, expect, infect, inflect, inject, inspect, interconnect, interject, intersect, misdirect, neglect, object, perfect, project, protect, reflect, reject, respect, resurrect, sect, select, subject, suspect, transect, unchecked, Utrecht

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pros·pect

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