how

adverb
\ˈhau̇ \

Definition of how 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : in what manner or way How did you two meet each other? How did he die? How do you know that?

b : for what reason : why How would I know if it's going to rain or not?

c : with what meaning : to what effect How are we to interpret such behavior?

d : by what name or title How art thou called?— William Shakespeare

2 : to what degree or extent How much longer do we have to wait? I don't know how old she is.

3 : in what state or condition How are you? How do you feel?

4 : at what price how a score of ewes now— Shakespeare

how about

: what do you say to or think of how about it, are you going?

how come

: how does it happen that : why How come you can't go?

Definition of how (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : the way or manner in which asked how they could help the story of how the company was founded remember how they fought also : the state or condition in which reported how the patient was found by the paramedics

b : that told them how he had a situation— Charles Dickens

2 : however, as a reader can shift his attention how he likes— William Empson

how

noun

Definition of how (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a question about manner or method the eternal whys and hows of small children— Jeanne Massey

2 : manner, method examining the hows and whys of exercise

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Examples of how in a Sentence

Adverb

How and where did you meet him? How shall I address the President? How will we pay for the trip? How did you get here?” “By bus.” How did she die?” “She had cancer.” How do you know that? How did you find us? How could you have known? How did you happen to move here?

Conjunction

We asked how we could help. Let me tell you how we'll pay for the trip. The book tells the story of how the company was founded. She explained how she came to live here. I don't know how the service is at the new restaurant. I remember how they fought. Be careful how you talk; you could get fired. She told us how she had to work hard. He knows how you are a valued employee. It's amazing how they completed the bridge so quickly.

Noun

the environmental activist eagerly launched into an explanation of the hows and whys of developing renewable energy sources
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Details about how he got shot weren’t immediately available. Michael Williams, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Man injured in Sanford shooting, police say," 15 July 2018 One Western officer recalls how a company that should have had 100-150 soldiers consisted of just 20 men. The Economist, "The fight against Islamic State is moving to Africa," 14 July 2018 Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman is scheduled to tell her peers this weekend about how her state is using its National Guard to help test and shore up cybersecurity for elections. CBS News, "Top state election officials meet amid security concerns," 14 July 2018 In other words, Kennedy's job was to figure out how to manage Deutsche Bank's risk in loaning Trump the money to build his Chicago tower, and to securitize or sell off parts of the loan as needed. Salvador Rizzo, chicagotribune.com, "There is an unfounded conspiracy theory about the Supreme Court and Trump Tower Chicago," 14 July 2018 College staff will help adults learn how to apply to college, check out available degrees and certificate options, evaluate prior college credits, and understand financial aid and scholarships. Michelle Mullins, Elgin Courier-News, "Elgin News Digest," 13 July 2018 Friant officials still are wrestling with how to fix the canal. Dale Kasler And Phillip Reese, sacbee, "The Valley floor is sinking, and it’s crippling California’s ability to deliver water," 13 July 2018 These include showing respect for national pride, explaining how President Trump’s anti-immigrant and tariff policies hurt the working class economically, and ensuring that hardworking Americans qualify for and can secure good jobs. WSJ, "Elites Miss the Point on Immigration Politics," 13 July 2018 Many may have forgotten, or never learned how, to compete for workers. Patricia Cohen, BostonGlobe.com, "Paychecks lag as profits soar, and prices erode wage gains," 14 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Everett Williams, the 64-year-old head of the WDairy farm near Madison, Georgia, said his farm has all kinds of sensors that print out who-knows-how-many reports on matters such as cow activity and if hogs have gotten into his pens. Drew Harwell, chicagotribune.com, "'Cow Fitbits' and artificial intelligence are coming to the dairy farm, but some farmers aren't impressed," 5 Apr. 2018 The country had the wealth, infrastructure and institutional know-how to put on a World Cup by itself, even one that would be expanding to 48 teams and 80 games. Kevin Baxter, latimes.com, "Sunil Gulati deserves an assist for bringing 2026 World Cup to North America," 22 June 2018 His plan hinges on leveraging the rental car company’s operational know-how, and being ready to try just about anything. Alex Davies, WIRED, "This Week in the Future of Cars: Money Money Money Moneyyy!," 3 June 2018 Recruits will learn sociology as well as practical know-how. The Economist, "How the career of the British bobby is changing," 24 May 2018 Bowen and Monsees gave each Juul its own circuit board and firmware, removing the need for technical know-how and insuring better control, and managed to fit it all into a small device. Jia Tolentino, The New Yorker, "The Promise of Vaping and the Rise of Juul," 7 May 2018 There's been no word if nonproliferation experts with the technical know-how to properly verify the site's closure have been extended an invitation. Joshua Berlinger, CNN, "Pyongyang won't give visas to South Koreans to cover nuclear site closure," 18 May 2018 China is increasingly using its financial muscle to acquire talent and know-how from overseas. Wenxin Fan, WSJ, "How a Powerful Spy Camera Invented at Duke Ended Up in China’s Hands," 11 June 2018 There’s always a healthy dose of entrepreneurialism at Brainstorm Tech, and several startup savants will share their know-how at Brainstorm Tech. Andrew Nusca, Fortune, "VMware, AMD, GE, and the U.S. Air Force Are Coming to Fortune Brainstorm Tech 2018," 1 June 2018

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

Adverb

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

Conjunction

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

Noun

1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for how

Adverb

Middle English, from Old English ; akin to Old High German hwuo how, Old English hwā who — more at who

Conjunction

see how entry 1

Noun

see how entry 1

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Statistics for how

Last Updated

20 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for how

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

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More Definitions for how

how

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of how

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in what manner or way : by what means

: for what reason

: to what degree, extent, or amount

English Language Learners Definition of how (Entry 2 of 2)

: in what manner or way

: in whatever way

how

adverb
\ˈhau̇ \

Kids Definition of how

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : in what way : by what means How do you work this thing? How did they get here?

2 : for what reason How can you treat me so badly?

3 : to what degree, number, or amount How cold is it?

4 : in what state or condition How are you?

how about

: what do you say to or think of How about a soda?

how come how do you do

: hello

Kids Definition of how (Entry 2 of 2)

: in what manner or condition We're studying how plants grow. I asked them how they were.

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More from Merriam-Webster on how

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for how

Spanish Central: Translation of how

Nglish: Translation of how for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of how for Arabic Speakers

Comments on how

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evasion of direct action or statement

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