Definition of haunt in English:

haunt

Syllabification: haunt
Pronunciation: /hônt, hänt
 
/

verb

[with object]
  • 1(Of a ghost) manifest itself at (a place) regularly: a gray 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.
    Synonyms
    appear in, materialize in; visit
  • 1.1(Of a person) frequent (a place): he haunts used book stores
    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.
    Synonyms
    frequent, patronize, visit regularly; loiter in, linger in
    informal hang out in
  • 1.2Be persistently and disturbingly present in (something): 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.
  • 1.3Be persistently in the mind of (someone): 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.
    Synonyms
    torment, disturb, trouble, worry, plague, burden, beset, beleaguer; prey on, weigh on, gnaw at, nag at, weigh heavily on, obsess
    informal bug

noun

Back to top  
  • A place frequented by a specified person or group of people: I revisited my old haunts Greenwich Village has been home to a number of literary haunts
    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.
    Synonyms
    hangout, stomping ground, stamping ground, meeting place; territory, domain, resort, retreat, spot

Derivatives

haunter

noun
More 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’.

Origin

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

More definitions of haunt

Definition of haunt in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day maelstrom
Pronunciation: ˈmālˌsträm
noun
a powerful whirlpool in the sea