"what" Definition

  1. pron., a., & adv. As an interrogative pronoun, used in asking questions regarding either persons or things; as, what is this? what did you say? what poem is this? what child is lost?
  2. pron., a., & adv. As an exclamatory word: -- (a) Used absolutely or independently; -- often with a question following.
  3. pron., a., & adv. Used adjectively, meaning how remarkable, or how great; as, what folly! what eloquence! what courage!
  4. pron., a., & adv. Sometimes prefixed to adjectives in an adverbial sense, as nearly equivalent to how; as, what happy boys!
  5. pron., a., & adv. As a relative pronoun
  6. pron., a., & adv. Used substantively with the antecedent suppressed, equivalent to that which, or those [persons] who, or those [things] which; -- called a compound relative.
  7. pron., a., & adv. Used adjectively, equivalent to the . . . which; the sort or kind of . . . which; rarely, the . . . on, or at, which.
  8. pron., a., & adv. Used adverbially in a sense corresponding to the adjectival use; as, he picked what good fruit he saw.
  9. pron., a., & adv. Whatever; whatsoever; what thing soever; -- used indefinitely.
  10. pron., a., & adv. Used adverbially, in part; partly; somewhat; -- with a following preposition, especially, with, and commonly with repetition.
  11. n. Something; thing; stuff.
  12. interrog. adv. Why? For what purpose? On what account?

More About what

Position in dictionary: 109588 of 111710 words.
Word Type: pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., pron., a., & adv., n., interrog. adv.,
Words that start with "what": 7
Words that end with "what": 4
Words that contain "what": 10
Next words in dictionary: whate'er, whatever, whatnot, whatso, whatsoe'er
Previous words in dictionary: wharves, wharp, wharling, wharl, wharfs

English Dictionary Definition of what

Read all of this dictionary's definitions for the word "what" on this page. Also learn the word type, other words that start with, end with or contain this word, the position in the dictionary and the next and previous terms. The historical definitions of the word "what" found on this page is taken from the 1913 edition of Webster's Unabridged Dictionary.