: for a while
Sit and rest awhile.
Can awhile be used after a preposition?: Usage Guide

Although considered a solecism by many commentators, awhile, like several other adverbs of time and place, is often used as the object of a preposition.

… would be generous enough to let me explore their world for awhile. David Yeadon

Examples of awhile in a Sentence

I'm going to sit and rest awhile. The rumor had been around awhile.
Recent Examples on the Web And with March fast approaching, her milestone underscored what also should have been obvious for awhile. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, 16 Feb. 2024 Chiefs fans who have been around for awhile know, though, that stylish Brittany is nothing new. Hedy Phillips, Peoplemag, 12 Feb. 2024 Phoenix Upper Main carries on legacy Though the demolition of the four Main Street Ellicott City buildings has been ongoing for awhile, the work has become more visible in recent weeks as scaffolding went up and exterior work began. Allana Haynes, Baltimore Sun, 18 Jan. 2024 After their week of working and bonding, though, the project was in limbo for awhile. Théoden Janes, Charlotte Observer, 9 Feb. 2024 The diagnosis, among others: Marler would not be dancing for awhile during the morning team’s Friday on-air dance parties. Molly Guthrey, Twin Cities, 4 Feb. 2024 For awhile, members had talked about expanding their church, but flooding problems, aging sewer lines and other issues made that complicated. Lauren Costantino, Miami Herald, 2 Feb. 2024 While the modern-era guidelines for royals regarding age and marital/familial status were updated years ago by the St. Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation — the nonprofit that produces the Winter Carnival — it’s been awhile since a mature queen has worn the crown. Molly Guthrey, Twin Cities, 27 Jan. 2024 Even cooled down wine that may have been sitting for awhile. Cristian Esteban, Rolling Stone, 21 Dec. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'awhile.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


adverbial use of a while (written as one word sporadically since Middle English), going back to Middle English awhile, one while, going back to Old English āne hwīle — more at a entry 2, while entry 1

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of awhile was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near awhile

Cite this Entry

“Awhile.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/awhile. Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


ə-ˈhwī(ə)l How to pronounce awhile (audio)
: for a while : for a short time
sit and rest awhile

More from Merriam-Webster on awhile

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!