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90s Slang You Should Know


[hwahy-luh m, wahy-] /ˈʰwaɪ ləm, ˈwaɪ-/ Archaic.
former; erstwhile:
whilom friends.
at one time.
Origin of whilom
before 900; Middle English; Old English hwīlum at times, dative plural of hwīl while (noun) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for whilom
Historical Examples
  • Selma, my whilom Finnish friend, was having her banns published.

    The Confession of a Fool August Strindberg
  • His whilom friend, conscience, came back and gibbered at him.

    The Carpet from Bagdad Harold MacGrath
  • Why should this man, this whilom friend of his, have everything?

    The Moving Finger Mary Gaunt
  • "It's this wye, sir," said his whilom chauffeur, taking grace of words.

    Trusia Davis Brinton
  • To make a long story short, the whilom fine, proud pheasants are of faded hue and look ruffled.

    The Duel A. I. Kuprin
  • A leaden doggedness had taken the place of his whilom good nature.

    Room Number 3 Anna Katharine Green
  • He was the whilom steersman we knew as Watson's cub; a very capable-looking man now.

    Gideon's Band George W. Cable
  • They were all pictures of destitution, and especially the whilom debonair poet.

    The Grey Cloak Harold MacGrath
  • His whilom arrogance was all fallen from him; he wore instead an air of extreme contrition.

    St. Martin's Summer Rafael Sabatini
  • But he will fail; his whilom follower, Mr. Carroll, is too powerful.

British Dictionary definitions for whilom


formerly; once
(prenominal) one-time; former
Word Origin
Old English hwīlum, dative plural of hwīlwhile; related to Old High German hwīlōm, German weiland of old
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 whilom

"at time past" (archaic), c.1200, from Old English hwilum "at times," dative case of while (q.v.). Cf. German weiland "formerly."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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