al·​ready | \ ȯl-ˈre-dē How to pronounce already (audio) , ˈȯl-ˌre-dē \

Definition of already

1 : prior to a specified or implied past, present, or future time : by this time : previously He had already left when I called.
2 used as an intensive All right already.Enough already!

Synonyms & Antonyms for already



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Examples of already in a Sentence

They've already agreed to come. I'd already left by the time you called. He acted as if he didn't already know. Flight 102 will already have taken off by the time Flight 101 lands. Have they arrived already?! I'm still not dressed! Do you have to go already?
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Recent Examples on the Web The Pistons are already without top frontcourt reserve Kelly Olynyk, who probably won’t return until 2022 due to a knee injury. Dana Gauruder, Detroit Free Press, 21 Nov. 2021 The end of the year can already be a stressful time for some. Jay Cannon, USA TODAY, 21 Nov. 2021 The region already is in a weak La Niña, the meteorological name for when cold equatorial ocean waters affect the Southwest’s weather. Brandon Loomis, The Arizona Republic, 21 Nov. 2021 The incident revealed a fear of reporting mishaps on a set that was already behind schedule, according to texts shared with The Times. Los Angeles Times, 20 Nov. 2021 For all of Marty’s awareness that Ike is bad for him, the codependent pull of the relationship is already too strong, and neither of them can independently break away. Erin Qualey, Vulture, 20 Nov. 2021 For anyone who got the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the wait already was just two months. Lauran Neergaard, Matthew Perrone And Mike Stobbe, Anchorage Daily News, 20 Nov. 2021 Persaud, who is Black, said her neighborhood is already racially and economically diverse. Washington Post, 20 Nov. 2021 And yet, the vast majority of vaccinated Americans were already eligible -- many just didn't know it. Cheyenne Haslett, ABC News, 20 Nov. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'already.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of already

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for already

Middle English al redy, from al redy, adjective, wholly ready, from al all + redy ready

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Time Traveler for already

Time Traveler

The first known use of already was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

23 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Already.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for already



English Language Learners Definition of already

: before this time : before now : before that time
: so soon : so early
used to describe a situation that exists now and that will continue to exist


al·​ready | \ ȯl-ˈre-dē How to pronounce already (audio) \

Kids Definition of already

1 : before a certain time : by this time The plan to help her make friends was already starting to work.— Peter Brown, The Wild Robot
2 : so soon Are they here already?

More from Merriam-Webster on already

Nglish: Translation of already for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of already for Arabic Speakers


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