Definition of haunt in English:

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Pronunciation: /hɔːnt/


[with object]
1(Of a ghost) manifest itself at (a place) regularly: a grey lady who haunts the chapel
More example sentences
  • Establishing that the terrain is haunted with ghosts from the past is an effective strategy for the eventual release of the spirits.
  • The stately home on the Richmond riverside is said to be haunted by the ghost of Lady Laurderdale, who lived there during the 1670s.
  • Last month, the little white statues began turning up everywhere, like ghosts haunting the places where the kids had been.
appear in, materialize in;
informal spook
1.1(Of a person or animal) frequent (a place): he haunts street markets
More example sentences
  • The map indicates the places most densely haunted by thieves in Shanghai in an effort to help people prevent thefts.
  • It was thought all last summer that some such wild creature was haunting the locality, for plenty of half-eaten eel and partly devoured trout were found at different times up and down the banks.
  • When the upper classes aren't at the theatre they're haunting the well-heeled suburbs of Belgrano, Recoleta and Retiro.
frequent, spend time in, patronize, visit regularly, be a regular visitor to, be a regular client of, loiter in, linger in
informal hang around/round/out in
British informal hang about in
1.2Be persistently and disturbingly present in (the mind): the sight haunted me for years
More example sentences
  • She cowered in a dark corner crying for the rest of the night, the scary sight still haunting her nervous mind.
  • His gloomy presence haunted her mind once more and she shut her eyes, trying to shut the memories of him away.
  • I hadn't even given my old home a thought during the last two months - I'd had too many things to worry about without my brother's death haunting my mind.
torment, obsess, oppress, disturb, trouble, worry, plague, burden, beset, beleaguer, bedevil, besiege, torture;
prey on, weigh on, gnaw at, nag at, weigh heavily on, lie heavy on;
prey on one's mind, weigh heavily on one's mind, be a weight on one's mind
informal bug
1.3(Of something unpleasant) continue to affect or cause problems for: cities haunted by the shadow of cholera
More example sentences
  • Were the Socialists in London responsible for the problems that later came to plague the fledgling state of Pakistan and continue to haunt it to this day?
  • The ICC need to move beyond being ‘gutless wonders’ on this issue, otherwise the issue will fester and continue to haunt the game.
  • These refugees have not given up their intent to return to their motherland nor are they at the liberty of returning to it as long as terror and violence continue to haunt the valley.


A place frequented by a specified person: the bar was a favourite haunt of artists of the time
More example sentences
  • It was one of my old haunts when I was a frequent visitor to New York, working on a novel with underlife scenes on the streets of Brooklyn.
  • ‘It's weird to go back to all my old haunts,’ he said.
  • Lisa Selin Davis's Belly, about an ageing ex-con returning to his old haunts in Saratoga Springs, was another notable contribution.
hang-out, stamping ground, meeting place, territory, domain, purlieu, resort, den, retreat, favourite spot
informal hidey-hole
British informal local, patch, manor



Pronunciation: /ˈhɔːntə/
Example sentences
  • It adds up to a remarkable, if bumpily uneven body of work, and, unless you are a professional film critic or a regular haunter of Parisian cinemas, chances are that you will know it only in patches.
  • It's the constant suggestion of violence that does it - apart from a door bending inwards, you never get to see any of the haunters.
  • A haunter of bookshops since his childhood, spent north and west of Kensington Gardens, he was a dyed in the wool bookman, and was perhaps the last Man of Letters to have read ‘everything’.


Middle English (in the sense 'frequent (a place')): from Old French hanter, of Germanic origin; distantly related to home.

Words that rhyme with haunt

avaunt, daunt, flaunt, gaunt, jaunt, taunt, vaunt

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: haunt

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