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Definition of WHY

3 definitions found:



Why \Why\, adv. [OE. whi, why, AS. hw[imac], hw?, instrumental case of hw[=a], hw[ae]t; akin to Icel. hv[imac] why, Dan. & Sw. hvi; cf. Goth. hw?. ?. See {Who}.] [1913 Webster]
     1. For what cause, reason, or purpose; on what account; wherefore; -- used interrogatively. See the Note under {What}, pron., 1. [1913 Webster]

              Turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?            --Ezek. xxxiii. 11. [1913 Webster]

     2. For which; on account of which; -- used relatively. [1913 Webster]

              No ground of enmity between us known
              Why he should mean me ill or seek to harm. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

              Turn the discourse; I have a reason why I would not have you speak so tenderly. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

     3. The reason or cause for which; that on account of which; on what account; as, I know not why he left town so suddenly; -- used as a compound relative. [1913 Webster]

     Note: Why is sometimes used as an interjection or an expletive in expression of surprise or content at a turn of affairs; used also in calling. "Why, Jessica!"
           --Shak.
           [1913 Webster]

                 If her chill heart I can not move, Why, I'll enjoy the very love.     --Cowley. [1913 Webster] Sometimes, also, it is used as a noun. [1913 Webster]

                 The how and the why and the where. --Goldsmith. [1913 Webster]

     {For why}, because; why. See {Forwhy}. [Obs. or Colloq.] [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

Why \Why\, n.
     A young heifer. [Prov. Eng.] --Grose.
     [1913 Webster] Whydah bird

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

60 Moby Thesaurus words for "why":
     Chinese puzzle, argument, baffling problem, brain twister, conundrum, crossword puzzle, crux, enigma, enigmatic question, excuse, explanation, floorer, for which, for why, from what cause, ground, how come, jigsaw puzzle, knot, knotty point, mind-boggler, mystery, mystification, nut to crack, on what account, perplexed question, perplexity, poser, pourquoi, pretense, pretext, problem, proof, puzzle, puzzlement, puzzler, question, question mark, rational ground, rationale, reason, reason for, reason why, riddle, sixty-four dollar question, stated cause, sticker, stumper, the big idea, the idea, the whatfor, the wherefore, the why, tough proposition, underlying reason, vexed question, what for, wherefore, whyever, whyfor


Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 [moby-thesaurus]


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