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[ev-ree] /ˈɛv ri/
being one of a group or series taken collectively; each:
We go there every day.
all possible; the greatest possible degree of:
every prospect of success.
every bit, in every respect; completely:
This is every bit as good as she says it is.
every now and then, on occasion; from time to time:
She bakes her own bread every now and then.
Also, every once in a while, every so often.
every other, every second; every alternate:
milk deliveries every other day.
every which way, in all directions; in disorganized fashion:
I brushed against the table, and the cards fell every which way.
Origin of every
1125-75; Middle English every, everich, Old English ǣfre ǣlc evereach
Synonym Study
1. See each. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for every now and then


each one (of the class specified), without exception: every child knows it
(not used with a negative) the greatest or best possible: every hope of success
each: used before a noun phrase to indicate the recurrent, intermittent, or serial nature of a thing: every third day, every now and then, every so often
(used in comparisons with as) every bit, quite; just; equally: every bit as funny as the other show
every other, each alternate; every second: every other day
every which way
  1. in all directions; everywhere: I looked every which way for you
  2. (US & Canadian) from all sides: stones coming at me every which way
Word Origin
C15 everich, from Old English ǣfre ǣlc, from ǣfreever + ǣlceach
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 every now and then



early 13c., contraction of Old English æfre ælc "each of a group," literally "ever each" (Chaucer's everich), from each with ever added for emphasis, as the word is still felt to need emphasis (e.g. Modern English every last ..., every single ..., etc.).

Cf. everybody, everything, etc. The word everywhen is attested from 1843 but never caught on; neither did everyhow (1837). Slang phrase every Tom, Dick, and Harry dates from at least 1734, from common English given names.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with every now and then

every now and then

every now and again
every once in a while
every so often
. Occasionally, from time to time; also, periodically. For example,
Every now and then I long for a piece of chocolate
, or
We take long walks every now and again
, or
Every once in a while he'll call
, or
Every so often she washes the car
. The first term dates from the first half of the 1700s, the last from the mid-1900s. Also see
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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