either

adjective
ei·​ther | \ ˈē-t͟hər How to pronounce either (audio) also ˈī- How to pronounce either (audio) \

Definition of either

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : being the one and the other of two : each flowers blooming on either side of the walk plays either instrument well
2 : being the one or the other of two take either road

either

pronoun

Definition of either (Entry 2 of 4)

: the one or the other take either of the two routes

either

conjunction

Definition of either (Entry 3 of 4)

used as a function word before two or more coordinate words, phrases, or clauses joined usually by or to indicate that what immediately follows is the first of two or more alternatives can be used either as a guest room or as an office

either

adverb

Definition of either (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : likewise, moreover used for emphasis after a negative not smart or handsome either
2 : for that matter used for emphasis after an alternative following a question or conditional clause especially where negation is implied who answers for the Irish parliament? or army either?— Robert Browning

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Examples of either in a Sentence

Adjective French and English are closer to each other than either language is to Chinese. You may take either road. You may choose either answer. Either way is all right with me. Pronoun I haven't written to either of my parents. Adverb you won't convince them, and, in fact, I don't agree either!
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The more that streaming rights get spread around, the more either/or choices sports fans will have to make. BostonGlobe.com, 20 Mar. 2021 The either/or requirement makes interpreting the results feel like one of those vexatious story problems from junior high math. Eric Zorn, chicagotribune.com, 9 Oct. 2020 That is not how either admirers or detractors on the right view President Trump. Andrew C. Mccarthy, National Review, 12 Aug. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Conjunction But scientists and doctors say things aren’t that simple — and a belief that exposing children to marijuana, either directly or indirectly, is harmless isn’t supported by the facts. Daniel M. Jimenez, The Cannifornian, 22 June 2017 Consumers face two possible outcomes — insurers will either leave the marketplace or be forced to raise their rates. Bloomberg News, The Denver Post, 5 May 2017 Either the gravitational influence from a passing star or group of stars, or the shock waves from an old exploding star in the distance, stirs up the nebula. Mike Lynch / Sky Watch, Twin Cities, 11 Mar. 2017 Now either the president is flip-flopping or his staff is, once again, speaking out of turn. Alicia Wallace, The Cannabist, 23 Feb. 2017 The tests use either a cheek swab or saliva and return autosomal DNA reports, sampling at more than 700,000 locations along a genome. Katharine Gammon, Orange County Register, 30 Jan. 2017 The quarterbacks are the storyline for the 1:35 p.m. kickoff, but not in the way either team would’ve liked. Jimmy Durkin, The Mercury News, 3 Jan. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Importantly, local police do not have that authority either. Steve Cohen, STAT, 28 July 2021 Which is a good reminder: Edible gardens don't have to be confined to beds, either. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, 13 July 2021 Casey, who has traveled to Texas in the past, hasn’t either. oregonlive, 29 June 2021 Not everyone has an espresso maker either, though many will consider getting one after watching Ms. Stewart make scrambled eggs with her cappuccino frother, which are then served on brioche from Balthazar. John Anderson, WSJ, 29 June 2021 The school didn’t have a cafeteria either, but that’s another story. Elaine Ayala, San Antonio Express-News, 25 June 2021 But the Gators’ legend, now 76 and retired, does not have to deal with the repercussions of NIL, either. Edgar Thompson, orlandosentinel.com, 24 June 2021 Speaking of Booker, L.A. doesn't have an answer for him on defense, either. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, 20 June 2021 And now Russians don't want to have shots in their arms either. NBC News, 20 June 2021

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

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Pronoun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Conjunction

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for either

Adjective

Middle English, from Old English ǣghwæther both, each, from ā always + ge-, collective prefix + hwæther which of two, whether — more at aye, co-

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Time Traveler for either

Time Traveler

The first known use of either was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near either

eith

either

either-or

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Statistics for either

Cite this Entry

“Either.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/either. Accessed 1 Aug. 2021.

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More Definitions for either

either

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of either

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: one and the other of two
: one or the other of two

either

pronoun

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

: the one or the other

either

adverb

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

: in addition

either

adjective
ei·​ther | \ ˈē-t͟hər How to pronounce either (audio) , ˈī- \

Kids Definition of either

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : each entry 1 There are flowers on either side of the road.
2 : being one or the other You can take either road.

either

pronoun

Kids Definition of either (Entry 2 of 4)

: the one or the other She hadn't told either of her parents.

either

conjunction

Kids Definition of either (Entry 3 of 4)

used before words or phrases the last of which follows "or" to show that they are choices or possibilities You can either go or stay.

either

adverb

Kids Definition of either (Entry 4 of 4)

: also used after a negative statement The car is reliable and not expensive either.

More from Merriam-Webster on either

Nglish: Translation of either for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of either for Arabic Speakers

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