There is no official documentation from the time when Rhode Island first adopted the word "Hope" on its Seal and flag that explains why this word was chosen.
The Rhode Island General Assembly first adopted a Seal for the colony containing an anchor with the word "Hope" above it on May 4, 1664. The most coherent explanation as to the use of "Hope" comes from the historical notes of Howard M. Chapin published in Illustrations of the Seals, Arms and Flags of Rhode Island, printed by the Rhode Island Historical Society in 1930. On pages 4 and 5, Mr. Chapin wrote that the words and emblems on the Seal were probably inspired by the biblical phrase "hope we have as an anchor of the soul", contained in Hebrews, Chapter 6, verses 18 and 19.
Placed on a white field is a circle of thirteen gold stars representing the first thirteen states? The stars surround a gold ship's anchor. The states motto “Hope" is on a blue ribbon below the anchor.