al·​ways ˈȯl-wēz How to pronounce always (audio)
-(ˌ)wāz How to pronounce always (audio)
 also  ˈȯ-
: at all times : invariably
always smiling
: forever
will love you always
: at any rate : in any event
You can always try again if it doesn't work this time.

Examples of always in a Sentence

He always tries, but he doesn't always succeed. It's always a pleasure to see you. I can always tell when he's upset. This area is always filled with tourists. Things won't always go as planned. You're always welcome to stay with us. He has always been a good friend to me. Life won't always be this easy. I always thought they'd get married some day, but they never did. Isn't that what you've always wanted?
Recent Examples on the Web So, for a character, there’s always a kind of hesitation, some kind of mistrust toward what’s in front of you. Leo Barraclough, Variety, 10 Apr. 2024 No matter how many bunches of curly kale, sturdy collard greens and steely chard arrive each week, there’s always a place on my table for their floppy, verdant magic. Melissa Clark, San Diego Union-Tribune, 10 Apr. 2024 But waiting doesn’t always mean people aren’t enthusiastic about eventually having children. Jamie Ducharme, TIME, 10 Apr. 2024 But this doesn’t mean a producer will always be able to input footage into an AI model without consent. Dan Stone, The Hollywood Reporter, 10 Apr. 2024 King has always been open about grappling with imposter syndrome over the years as a Black woman navigating a career in entertainment. Jasmine Browley, Essence, 10 Apr. 2024 Same goes for the wigs Speer and Ochoa have always worn when photographed or onstage — a spur-of-the-moment choice by Ochoa, right before Khruangbin’s very first show. Ryan Bradley MacLeod Andrews Emma Kehlbeck Quinton Kamara, New York Times, 10 Apr. 2024 And when designing for women’s breasts the tension between function and fashion has always been paramount. Lisa Z. Lindahl, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 Although many hotels come equipped with their own toiletries, these products don’t always cater to every skin type or your complexion's unique concerns. Alexandra Domrongchai, Travel + Leisure, 29 Mar. 2024

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

Word History


Middle English alwayes, from alwey

First Known Use

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

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

Dictionary Entries Near always

Cite this Entry

“Always.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


al·​ways ˈȯl-wēz How to pronounce always (audio) -wəz How to pronounce always (audio)
: at all times : invariably
always ready for a party
: throughout all time : forever
I'll remember you always

More from Merriam-Webster on always

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!