1

then

play
adverb \ ˈt͟hen \

Definition of then

1 :at that time
2 a :soon after that :next in order of time
  • walked to the door, then turned
b :following next after in order of position, narration, or enumeration :being next in a series
  • first came the clowns, and then came the elephants
c :in addition :besides
  • then there is the interest to be paid
3 a :as a necessary consequence
  • if the angles are equal, then the complements are equal
b (1) :in that case
  • take it, then, if you want it so much
(2) used after but to qualify or offset a preceding statement
  • she lost the race, but then she never really expected to win
c :according to that :as may be inferred
  • your mind is made up, then
d :as it appears :by way of summing up
  • the cause of the accident, then, is established
and then some
:with much more in addition
  • would require all his strength and then some

Examples of then in a Sentence

  1. She lived in the Soviet Union, as it then was called.

  2. Just then he walked in.

  3. Back then, he was living in New York.

Recent Examples of then from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of then

Middle English than, then then, than, from Old English thonne, thænne; akin to Old High German denne then, than, Old English thæt that


2

then

noun

Definition of then

:that time
  • since then, he's been more cautious

Examples of then in a Sentence

  1. Since then, I've been more careful.

  2. He advised me to wait until then.

  3. They'll announce their decision next week. Until then, she'll just have to hope for the best.

  4. We should get there before then.

  5. They were friends from then on.

  6. Nothing like that had ever happened up to then.

First Known Use of then

14th century


3

then

adjective

Definition of then

:existing or acting at or belonging to the time mentioned
  • the then secretary of state

Recent Examples of then from the Web

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

First Known Use of then

1584



THEN Defined for English Language Learners

then

play
adverb

Definition of then for English Language Learners

  • : at that time : at the time mentioned

  • —used to indicate what happened or happens next

  • —used to indicate what should be done next


then

noun

Definition of then for English Language Learners

  • : that time


then

adjective

Definition of then for English Language Learners

  • : existing at or belonging to the time mentioned


THEN Defined for Kids

1

then

play
adverb \ ˈt͟hen \

Definition of then for Students

1 :at that time
  • People then believed in dragons.
2 :soon after that :next
  • Go two blocks, then turn left.
3 :in addition :besides
  • Then there are the dishes to wash.
4 :in that case
  • Take it, then, if you want it so badly.
5 :as an expected result
  • If you were there, then you must have seen me.

2

then

noun

Definition of then for Students

:that time
  • Wait until then.

3

then

adjective

Definition of then for Students

:existing or acting at that time
  • the then president


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