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See also: where- and were


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English wher, from Old English hwǣr (where, literally at what place), from Proto-Germanic *hwar (where), from Proto-Indo-European *kʷo- (interrogative pronoun).




  1. In, at or to which place or situation.
    • 2013 July-August, Henry Petroski, “Geothermal Energy”, in American Scientist, volume 101, number 4:
      Energy has seldom been found where we need it when we want it. Ancient nomads, wishing to ward off the evening chill and enjoy a meal around a campfire, had to collect wood and then spend time and effort coaxing the heat of friction out from between sticks to kindle a flame. With more settled people, animals were harnessed to capstans or caged in treadmills to turn grist into meal.
    • 1967, Barbara Sleigh, Jessamy, Sevenoaks, Kent: Bloomsbury, published 1993, →ISBN, page 122:
      Through the open front door ran Jessamy, down the steps to where Kitto was sitting at the bottom with the pram beside him.
    • For more quotations using this term, see Citations:where.
    I've forgotten where I was in this book, but it was probably around chapter four.
    I hardly knew where I was going.
    Synonym: (to which place; archaic or literary) whither
  2. In, at or to the place (that) or a place (that).
    Stay where you are.
    Go back where you came from.
    Let's go where it's warmer.
  3. In, at or to any place (that); wherever; anywhere.
    Please sit where you like.
    Their job is to go where they are called.
  4. In a position, case, etc. in which; if.
    You cannot be too careful where explosives are involved.
    Where no provision under this Act is applicable, the case shall be decided in accordance with the customary practices.
  5. While on the contrary; although; whereas.
    • 1595 December 9 (first known performance), William Shakespeare, “The life and death of King Richard the Second”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act III, scene ii]:
      And flight and die is death destroying death; Where fearing dying pays death servile breath.
    • July 18 2012, Scott Tobias, AV Club The Dark Knight Rises[1]
      Where the Joker preys on our fears of random, irrational acts of terror, Bane has an all-consuming, dictatorial agenda that’s more stable and permanent, a New World Order that’s been planned out with the precision of a military coup.
    • 2013 June 14, Jonathan Freedland, “Obama's once hip brand is now tainted”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 1, page 18:
      Now we are liberal with our innermost secrets, spraying them into the public ether with a generosity our forebears could not have imagined. Where we once sent love letters in a sealed envelope, or stuck photographs of our children in a family album, now such private material is despatched to servers and clouds operated by people we don't know and will never meet.
    • For more quotations using this term, see Citations:where.
    Where Susy has trouble coloring inside the lines, Johnny has already mastered shading.



where (not comparable)

  1. Interrogative adverb, used in either a direct or indirect question: in, at or to what place.
    Where are you?
    Where are you going?
    He asked where I grew up.
    1. (with certain prepositions) What place.
      Where did you come from?
      Where are you off to?
      Where are you at? (informal)
    2. (informal) where are.
      Where you at?
      Where you going?
  2. In what situation.
    Where would we be without our parents?
  3. (relative) In, at or to which.
    This is the place where we first met.
    He is looking for a house where he can have a complete office.
    That's the place where we went on holiday.
    Here's a picture of York, where I was born. (non-defining)
  4. (fused relative) The place in, at or to which.
    He lives within five miles of where he was born.
    This is a photo of where I went on holiday.


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


where (plural wheres)

  1. The place in which something happens.
    A good article will cover the who, the what, the when, the where, the why and the how.


Derived terms[edit]

all parts of speech


  • Hawaiian Creole: wea