Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
while (plural whiles)
- An uncertain duration of time, a period of time.
- He lectured for quite a long while.
uncertain duration of time, a period of time
- During the same time that.
- He was sleeping while I was singing.
- 1948, Carey McWilliams, North from Mexico / The Spanish-Speaking People of The United States, J. B. Lippincott Company, page 25,
- While De Anza was exploring the Bay of San Francisco, seeking a site for the presidio, the American colonists on the eastern seaboard, three thousand miles away, were celebrating the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
2013 June 7, David Simpson, “Fantasy of navigation”, The Guardian Weekly, volume 188, number 26, page 36:
- Like most human activities, ballooning has sponsored heroes and hucksters and a good deal in between. For every dedicated scientist patiently recording atmospheric pressure and wind speed while shivering at high altitudes, there is a carnival barker with a bevy of pretty girls willing to dangle from a basket or parachute down to earth.
- This case, while interesting, is a bit frustrating.
- (Northern England, Scotland) Until.
- I'll wait while you've finished painting.
- Beaumont and Fletcher
- I may be conveyed into your chamber; I'll lie under your bed while midnight.
- As long as.
- While you're at school you may live at home.
- I. Watts
- Use your memory; you will sensibly experience a gradual improvement, while you take care not to overload it.
during the same time that
until — see until
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- (transitive) To pass (time) idly.
- The lovely lady whiled the hours away.
- To loiter.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Spectator to this entry?)
to pass time idly