Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

whether

 - definition
 
 
 
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
conjunction British English pronunciation: whether /ˈweðə(r)/
 
  1. 1
    used when someone does not know which of two possibilities is true

    They asked us whether we were married.

    There is some doubt as to whether the illness is infectious.

    whether...or:

    She doesn't even know whether her daughter is dead or alive.

    whether or not:

    I still don't know whether or not he's planning to come.

  2. 2
    used when someone can choose between two possibilities

    Employees are deciding whether to accept the offer.

    whether or not:

    There was a debate over whether or not to send troops.

  3. 3
    used for saying that it does not matter which of two possibilities is true, because the situation will be the same

    The journey, whether by road or rail, takes under four hours.

    whether...or not:

    Whether you like it or not, you'll have to change your lifestyle.

    whether...or (whether):

    Whether we win or whether we lose, we shall respect the democratic process.

 

Word of the Day

resurrection

the occasion on which Jesus Christ was brought back to life after his death, according to the Bible

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog