however - definition and synonyms

adverb, conjunction 

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However can be used in the following ways:
as an adverb showing how a sentence is related to what has already been said: Prices have been rising. It is unlikely, however, that this increase will continue.
as an adverb (before an adjective or adverb): However hard he tried, he could not control his feelings. (before ‘much’ or ‘many’): However much they earn, they will never be satisfied. (starting a question): However did you manage to make him change his mind?
as a conjunction (joining two clauses): You can arrange the furniture however you want.However you look at it, it’s an enormous problem.
  1. 1
    used when you are saying something that seems surprising after your previous statement, or that makes your previous statement seem less true

    The president was confident of success. His advisers were not so sure, however.

  2. 2
    used when you are changing the subject

    I’m delighted I could be here today. However, I didn’t come here to talk about myself.

  3. 3
    used for saying that it makes no difference how good, bad, difficult etc something is or how much there is of something
    however good/well/bad/badly/hard etc:

    She would still love him however badly he behaved.

    If you take money from the fund, however small the amount, you must record it in this book.

    however much/many:

    We’re determined to have a wonderful holiday, however much it costs.

    However many times you explain things, you can never get him to understand.

    however long something takes:

    We are determined to solve this problem, however long it takes.

  4. 4
    spoken used instead of ‘how’ in questions for emphasizing that you think something is surprising

    ‘The original documents got lost.’ ‘However did that happen?’

  5. 5
    in whatever way someone chooses

    We let the kids decorate their rooms however they want to.

    However you look at it, this is very worrying news.