always

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English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English alwayes, allwayes, allweyes, a variant of Middle English allwaye, alle wey (always), from Old English ealneġ, ealneweġ (always, perpetually, literally all the way, all the while, continuously), from ealne + weġ (accusative case), equivalent to alway +‎ -s. Cognate with Scots alwayis (always), Low German allerwegens (very often, literally all ways'). More at all, way.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈɔː(l).weɪz/, /ˈɔːl.wɪz/
  • (file)
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈɔl.weɪz/, /ˈɔl.wɪz/, /ˈɔl.wəz/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: al‧ways

Adverb[edit]

always (not comparable)

  1. At all times; throughout all time
    God is always the same.
    Synonyms: perpetually, continually, all the time, every time
    • 2013 May-June, David Van Tassel, Lee DeHaan, “Wild Plants to the Rescue”, in American Scientist, volume 101, number 3:
      Plant breeding is always a numbers game. [] The wild species we use are rich in genetic variation, and individual plants are highly heterozygous and do not breed true. In addition, we are looking for rare alleles, so the more plants we try, the better.
  2. Constantly during a certain period, or regularly at stated intervals (opposed to sometimes or occasionally).
    Synonyms: invariably, uniformly
    In this street, the shops always close during lunchtime.
    • 1840, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Money
      His liveries are black,—his carriage is black,—he always rides a black galloway,—and, faith, if he ever marry again, I think he will show his respect to the sainted Maria by marrying a black woman.
    • 1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], chapter 1, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., [], OCLC 752825175, page 030:
      They burned the old gun that used to stand in the dark corner up in the garret, close to the stuffed fox that always grinned so fiercely. Perhaps the reason why he seemed in such a ghastly rage was that he did not come by his death fairly. And why else was he put away up there out of sight?—and so magnificent a brush as he had too.
    • 1922, Michael Arlen, “Ep./1/1”, in “Piracy”: A Romantic Chronicle of These Days:
      And so it had always pleased M. Stutz to expect great things from the dark young man whom he had first seen in his early twenties ; and his expectations has waxed rather than waned on hearing the faint bruit of the love of Ivor and Virginia—for Virginia, M. Stutz thought, would bring fineness to a point in a man like Ivor Marlay, [].
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 7, in The China Governess[1]:
      The highway to the East Coast which ran through the borough of Ebbfield had always been a main road and even now, despite the vast garages, the pylons and the gaily painted factory glasshouses which had sprung up beside it, there still remained an occasional trace of past cultures.
  3. (informal) In any event.
    I thought I could always go back to work.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Used for both duration and frequency.
  • "Always" used with a continuous tense can imply anger or annoyance about another person's persistent habits, for example "My mum is always telling me to tidy me room!".

Synonyms[edit]

Antonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.