To long for something is to want it. Some of my students are confused when I tell them that the adjective "long" can also be a verb. If you "long" for something, you have a deep desire for it.

  • Bertha longs to return to her family in El Salvador.
  • Clayton longs for a better life for his kids.
  • Hosni longs to see his wife and kids.
  • I’m longing for a really good, Chicago-style pizza.
  • Lyudmilla longed for a house for years, but when she finally got one she quickly found out how much work it required.

Of course, you can also use "long" as an adjective to describe the length of something:

  • She has very long hair.
  • He works long hours.
  • This is a very long book. (It has many pages and will take a long time to read.)

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This page was first published on January 12, 2012.