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- enPR: hwĕns, IPA(key): /ʍɛns/
- (in accents with the wine-whine merger) enPR: wĕns, IPA(key): /wɛns/
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- Rhymes: -ɛns
whence (not comparable)
- (archaic, formal or literary) From where; from which place or source.
- Whence came I?
- "Pork" comes from French, whence we get most of our modern cooking terms.
- 1818, Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, Chapter 4:
- Whence, I often asked myself, did the principle of life proceed?
- 1885, Richard F. Burton, The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Night 564:
- […] But when I had bestridden the plank, quoth I to myself, "Thou deserveth all that betideth thee. All this is decreed to me of Allah (whose name be exalted!), to turn me from my greed of gain, whence ariseth all that I endure, for I have wealth galore."
- 1898, J. Meade Falkner, Moonfleet, Chapter 3:
- At first I could not tell what this new sound was, nor whence it came, and now it seemed a little noise close by, and now a great noise in the distance. And then it grew nearer and more defined, and in a moment I knew it was the sound of voices talking.
- This word is uncommon in contemporary usage; from where is now usually substituted (as in the example sentence: Where did I come from? or From where did I come?). Whence is now mainly encountered in older works and in poetic or literary writing.
- From whence has a strong literary precedent, appearing in Wyclif's Bible translation, Shakespeare and the King James Bible, as well as in the writings of numerous Victorian-era writers. In recent times, however, it has been criticized as redundant by usage commentators.
Terms derived from whence
from where; from which place or source
- (literary, poetic) Used for introducing the result of a fact that has just been stated.
- The work is slow and dangerous, whence the high costs.
- I scored more than you in the exam, whence we can conclude that I am better at the subject than you are.
- 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.
Translations to be checked