where·​abouts | \ ˈhwer-ə-ˌbau̇ts How to pronounce whereabouts (audio) , ˈwer-\
variants: or less commonly whereabout \ ˈhwer-​ə-​ˌbau̇t How to pronounce whereabout (audio) , ˈwer-​ \

Definition of whereabouts

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: about where : near what place whereabouts is the house


variants: or less commonly whereabout

Definition of whereabouts (Entry 2 of 3)

1 obsolete : on what business or errand
2 : near what place : where know whereabouts he lives
also whereabout

Definition of whereabouts (Entry 3 of 3)

: the place or general locality where a person or thing is their present whereabouts are a secret

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Synonyms for whereabouts

Synonyms: Adverb

where, whither

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Whereabouts Is or whereabouts Are?

Whereabouts may function as an adverb (“Whereabouts is it?”), a conjunction (“I know whereabouts he lives”), or a noun (“Her whereabouts were unknown”). The noun form may provoke confusion because it feels singular but looks plural; should one write “her whereabouts were” or "her whereabouts was”? Because the final -s is an adverbial suffix, not a plural ending (similar to the one at the end of besides), certain usage commentators have insisted on treating whereabouts as a singular noun. In spite of this, you should feel comfortable pairing it with a plural verb; while some have employed singular verbs with this word, the plural (“her whereabouts were”) has become the regular choice.

Examples of whereabouts in a Sentence


Whereabouts did you park the car? whereabouts do you expect to be on your journey tonight?

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction

Anyone with information on Crumbley's whereabouts is asked to call 911 or the sheriff's office at 205-325-1450. Carol Robinson, AL.com, "$1,000 reward offered in Monday disappearance of developmentally disabled man," 3 May 2018 She was forced to return to Saudi Arabia and was not publicly heard from again, according to activists tracking her whereabouts. Trevor Marshallsea, The Seattle Times, "Thai, Saudi officials meet over case of young Saudi woman," 8 Jan. 2019 Superior Court Judge Paula Dow said Wednesday that McClure and D’Amico must appear Monday for a deposition in a suit filed by Johnny Bobbitt over the whereabouts of the hundreds of thousands of dollars raised for him via GoFundMe. Fox News, "Police raid New Jersey couple's home after $400G in GoFundMe cash they raised for homeless veteran disappears," 6 Sep. 2018 So far Turkish investigators haven't found any trace of the body, and Saudi Arabia hasn’t disclosed any information on its whereabouts. Farnaz Fassihi, WSJ, "Former Saudi Official Rejects Outside Probe of Journalist’s Death," 9 Nov. 2018 None of the occupants taken into custody provided any information on the child’s whereabouts. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "Dad arrested at Muslim 'extremist' New Mexico home planned 'exorcism,' tied to terror-linked imam, report says," 7 Aug. 2018 Anyone with information on the bull’s whereabouts is asked to call the Walton Sheriff’s Office at 770-267-2391. Alexis Stevens, ajc, "2,000-pound bull worth $10K stolen in Walton County," 3 July 2018 Abusers can utilize social media in numerous ways, including monitoring a partner’s whereabouts, forcing them to share an account, expressing aggression and reestablishing contact after a fight or break-up. Andrea K. Mcdaniels, baltimoresun.com, "Parents should look out for signs of teen dating violence," 8 Mar. 2018 Fans have been in a frenzy over the whereabouts of Hetty Lange, who is played by actress Linda Hunt. Megan Stein, Country Living, "'NCIS: LA' Actress Linda Hunt Speaks Out About Hetty's Mysterious Disappearance," 25 Nov. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction

1605, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for whereabouts


Middle English wheraboutes (from wher aboute + -s, adverb suffix) & wher aboute, from where, wher where + about, aboute about — more at whence

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Time Traveler for whereabouts

The first known use of whereabouts was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for whereabouts



English Language Learners Definition of whereabouts

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: near what place



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

: the location of a person or thing


where·​abouts | \ ˈhwer-ə-ˌbau̇ts How to pronounce whereabouts (audio) , ˈwer-\

Kids Definition of whereabouts

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: near what place Whereabouts did you lose it?


noun plural

Kids Definition of whereabouts (Entry 2 of 2)

: the place where someone or something is
Hint: Whereabouts can be used as a singular or plural in writing and speaking. … she knew the whereabouts of every fallen tree and hidden gully.— John Reynolds Gardiner, Stone Fox

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Comments on whereabouts

What made you want to look up whereabouts? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a sum of money that is sent as a payment

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