verb (used with object)
- to hold or treat as dear; feel love for: to cherish one’s native land.
- to care for tenderly; nurture: to cherish a child.
- to cling fondly or inveterately to: to cherish a memory.
- to show great tenderness for; treasure
- to cling fondly to (a hope, idea, etc); nurseto cherish ambitions
early 14c., cherischen, from Old French cheriss-, present participle stem of chierir “to hold dear” (12c., Modern French chérir), from chier “dear,” from Latin carus “dear, costly, beloved” (see whore). The Latin word also is the source of Italian, Spanish, Portuguese caro; Old Provençal, Catalan car. Related: Cherished; cherishing.