when
I. adverb Etymology: Middle English, from Old English hwanne, hwenne; akin to Old High German hwanne when, Old English hwā who — more at who Date: before 12th century 1. at what time <
when will you return
>
2. a. at or during which time b. and then 3. at a former and usually less prosperous time <
brag fondly of having known him when — Vance Packard
>
II. conjunction Etymology: Middle English, from Old English hwanne, hwenne, from hwanne, hwenne, adverb Date: before 12th century 1. a. at or during the time that ; while <
went fishing when he was a boy
>
b. just at the moment that <
stop writing when the bell rings
>
c. at any or every time that <
when he listens to music, he falls asleep
>
2. in the event that ; if <
a contestant is disqualified when he disobeys the rules
>
3. a. considering that <
why use water at all when you can drown in it — Stuart Chase
>
b. in spite of the fact that ; although <
quit politics when I might have had a great career in it
>
4. the time or occasion at or in which <
tomorrow is when we must decide
>
<
humor is when you laugh — Earl Rovit
>
III. pronoun Date: 14th century what or which time <
life-long homes for those…who have lived here since when — Kim Waller
>
IV. noun Date: 1616 the time in which something is done or comes about <
troubled his head very little about the hows and whens of life — Laurence Sterne
>

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • When — When, adv. [OE. when, whan, whenne, whanne, AS. hw[ae]nne, hwanne, hwonne; akin to OS. hwan, OD. wan, OHG. wanne, G. wann when, wenn if, when, Goth. hwan when, and to E. who. ????. See {Who}.] [1913 Webster] 1. At what time; used interrogatively …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • When as — When When, adv. [OE. when, whan, whenne, whanne, AS. hw[ae]nne, hwanne, hwonne; akin to OS. hwan, OD. wan, OHG. wanne, G. wann when, wenn if, when, Goth. hwan when, and to E. who. ????. See {Who}.] [1913 Webster] 1. At what time; used… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • When that — When When, adv. [OE. when, whan, whenne, whanne, AS. hw[ae]nne, hwanne, hwonne; akin to OS. hwan, OD. wan, OHG. wanne, G. wann when, wenn if, when, Goth. hwan when, and to E. who. ????. See {Who}.] [1913 Webster] 1. At what time; used… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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