even - definition and synonyms


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Even is used for emphasis mainly before a word, a phrase, or a clause beginning with ‘as’, ‘if’, or ‘though’. When emphasizing verbs, even comes before an ordinary verb: They even served champagne at breakfast. But even comes after an auxiliary verb, a modal verb, or the verb ‘to be’: She doesn’t even know his name.Some computers can even talk to you.
Sometimes even is used after a word for emphasis: São Paulo is a huge city, larger even than New York.The task might be difficult, impossible even.
  1. 1
    used for showing that you are saying something that is surprising

    It always feels cold in this room, even in summer.

    Even the dog refused to eat it.

    Lucy’s face brightened a little – she even managed to smile.

    not even:

    He never stopped working, not even at Christmas.

    They didn’t even offer me a cup of tea.

    even now (=used for saying it is surprising that something still continues):

    Even now, after all these years, he cannot mention her name without crying.

    even then (=used for saying that something is surprising after what has happened):

    They’re going to spend £5 billion on our railway network, and even then it won’t be as good as the French system.

  2. 2
    used for emphasizing that although something is big, good, bad etc, something else is bigger, better, worse etc

    She admits things are bad, but argues they were even worse under the previous government.

    If anything, local people are treated even more harshly than foreigners.

  3. 3
    used for adding a more extreme word or phrase to emphasize what you have just said

    Her latest novel was very good, even brilliant.

    The quarrel might have ended in violencemurder, even.

  4.   From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    I (literally/just) can't even a spoken phrase and internet meme used for saying that you are so amazed, shocked, fed up, etc. that you are unable to express how you feel

    Why's she going out with that creep? I literally can't even.

    When I’m hungover, I just can’t even.

    Submitted from United Kingdom on 25/06/2014