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[awl-weyz, -weez] /ˈɔl weɪz, -wiz/
every time; on every occasion; without exception:
He always works on Saturday.
all the time; continuously; uninterruptedly:
There is always some pollution in the air.
Will you always love me?
in any event; at any time; if necessary:
She can always move back with her parents.
Origin of always
1200-50; Middle English alwayes, alleweyes, alles weis, genitive (denoting distribution; cf. once) of all wei; alle- lost its genitive ending and was treated as a compounding element under influence of alle wey alway. See all, way1alway, -s1
1. regularly, invariably, consistently. 2, 3. perpetually, everlastingly, continuously.
Synonym Study
2, 3. Both always and ever refer to uniform or perpetual continuance. Always often expresses or implies repetition as producing the uniformity or continuance: The sun always rises in the east. Ever implies an unchanging sameness throughout: Natural law is ever to be reckoned with. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for always
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Soon as I looked at her it seemed to me I'd known her always.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • If it does not always tell us what to do, it always cautions us what not to do.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • When he did go it was always understood to be positively for not more than two weeks.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • I am more grateful to you than words can utter—and I will always be glad to do anything for you.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • But then, I always was a terrible poor judge of human nature.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
British Dictionary definitions for always


/ˈɔːlweɪz; -wɪz/
without exception; on every occasion; every time: he always arrives on time
continually; repeatedly
in any case: you could always take a day off work
(informal) for ever; without end: our marriage is for always
Also (archaic) alway
Word Origin
C13 alles weiss, from Old English ealne weg, literally: all the way; see all, way
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for always

mid-14c., compound of Old English phrase ealne weg "always, quite, perpetually," literally "all the way," with accusative of space or distance, though the oldest recorded usages refer to time. The adverbial genitive -s appeared early 13c. and is now the standard, though the variant alway survived into 1800s. OED speculates allway was originally of space or distance, "but already in the oldest Eng. transferred to an extent of time."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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