once

adverb
\ ˈwən(t)s How to pronounce once (audio) \

Definition of once

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : one time and no more rode a horse only once went skydiving once
2 : at any one time : under any circumstances : ever didn't once thank me
3 : at some indefinite time in the past : formerly was once a booming mining town
4 : by one degree of relationship first cousin once removed
once and for all
1 : with finality : definitively The team proved once and for all that they are the best.
2 : for the last time I'm telling you once and for all that I'm not going.
once in a while
: now and then spent most of their time at home, but went out once in a while

once

noun

Definition of once (Entry 2 of 4)

: one single time : one time at least Please be on time this once.
at once
1 : at the same time : simultaneously
3 : both entry 2 at once funny and sad

Definition of once (Entry 3 of 4)

: that once was : former a once successful actor

Definition of once (Entry 4 of 4)

: at the moment when : as soon as Once she spoke, I recognized her.

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Synonyms for once

Synonyms: Adverb

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Conjunction

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Examples of once in a Sentence

Adverb I will repeat the question once. The play was performed only once. She didn't once thank me. He didn't look at me once. It was once done that way. A river once flowed through this canyon. It was once a booming mining town. Their music was once very popular. Noun I have tried Indian food more than once. Please be on time just this once. For once you seem to know what I'm talking about. Adjective the once child star is now a lawyer in the entertainment industry Conjunction Once she spoke, I recognized her. you should have stopped wrestling once you knew someone was getting hurt, not five minutes later
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb At Banda Neira, in the Spice Islands, once rare nutmeg trees dot a verdant idyll that lured Dutch traders in the 1600s. National Geographic, "Three by sea: Life-changing tales from female travelers," 14 Nov. 2019 Baumann was studying Buchnera, a once free-living bacterium now found solely inside aphids. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "A love of insects and their microbial partners helped this biologist reveal secrets of symbiosis," 14 Nov. 2019 Many of the United States’ own national parks were built on land once inhabited by Native Americans, who were sometimes forcefully removed. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "China Is Developing a New National Parks System, Inspired by Yellowstone and Yosemite," 14 Nov. 2019 Lush rainforests, majestic rivers, volcanos, chimpanzee sanctuaries and more await visitors to the Congo once tensions subsides. Danielle Pointdujour, Essence, "Black Travel Vibes: Revel in The Beauty Of The Democratic Republic Of The Congo," 13 Nov. 2019 Mallory is also helping heal people whose lives are threatened by once-untreatable infections, which is what ultimately ended her life. Diane Shader Smith, STAT, "My daughter is gone but her legacy lives on through her writing and phage therapy," 13 Nov. 2019 Those liquid chemicals that crews spray on highways and thoroughfares to reduce ice and melt snow are not your car’s friend once the asphalt is clear. Laura Daily, Washington Post, "Some areas are already seeing snow. Here’s how to winterize your car.," 12 Nov. 2019 This Indiana team’s growing pains are at once obvious, and understandable in many respects. Zach Osterman, Indianapolis Star, "Trayce Jackson-Davis leads Hoosiers in imperfect IU win over North Alabama," 12 Nov. 2019 The couple, who have fostered around 40 kids since 1996, have always gravitated toward older and medically fragile ones, in part because Julie once worked as a caregiver for disabled children. Lizz Schumer, Woman's Day, "Childhelp Children’s Advocacy Center Is Aiding Victims of Abuse," 12 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The second-year quarterback completed 10 of 13 passes for 113 yards, led two scoring drives in three series of action and once again showed play-making ability with his feet. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Lions' stock watch: Rookie LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin a bright spot," 25 Aug. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective And Michigan's gone through spring drills without a clear answer of who will realistically be the front-runner once summer begins. Nick Baumgardner, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football's Shea Patterson still competing despite unclear situation," 12 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'once.' 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 once

Adverb

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1620, in the meaning defined above

Conjunction

1747, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for once

Adverb, Noun, Adjective, and Conjunction

Middle English ones, from genitive of on one

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More Definitions for once

once

adverb
How to pronounce once (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of once

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: one time only
: at any one time
: at some time in the past

once

noun

English Language Learners Definition of once (Entry 2 of 3)

: one single time

English Language Learners Definition of once (Entry 3 of 3)

: at the moment when : as soon as

once

adverb
\ ˈwəns How to pronounce once (audio) \

Kids Definition of once

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : one time only It happened just once.
2 : at some time in the past : formerly It was once done that way.
3 : at any one time : ever She didn't once thank me.
once and for all
: now and for the last time That should solve the problem once and for all.
once in a while
: from time to time I play golf once in a while.

once

noun

Kids Definition of once (Entry 2 of 3)

: one single time We can make an exception just this once.
at once
1 : at the same time I can't understand with both of you talking at once.
2 : immediately sense 2 Leave at once.

Kids Definition of once (Entry 3 of 3)

: as soon as : when Once you've finished your homework, you may go outside.

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More from Merriam-Webster on once

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for once

Spanish Central: Translation of once

Nglish: Translation of once for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of once for Arabic Speakers

Comments on once

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