or af·ter·wards

[af-ter-werd, ahf-]


at a later or subsequent time; subsequently.

Origin of afterward

before 1000; Middle English; Old English æfterweard, alteration (with -r- of æfter after) of æfteweard, equivalent to æfte-, æftan aft1 + -weard -ward
Can be confusedafterward afterword Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for afterwards

eventually, subsequently, later, then, thereupon

Examples from the Web for afterwards

Contemporary Examples of afterwards

Historical Examples of afterwards

  • Hope said afterwards that she never swam with such delight as on that day.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • As it will be so privately performed, clothes and equipage may be provided for afterwards.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • "I had to coin a name for the place of meeting," he said to Mrs. Roberts afterwards.

  • They found her afterwards by her own hearthstone, thrust through by a Frenchman's bill.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • It was hard to meet Ethel—and Milly and Mrs. Baker afterwards.

British Dictionary definitions for afterwards




after an earlier event or time; subsequently

Word Origin for afterwards

Old English æfterweard, æfteweard, from aft + ward
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

Word Origin and History for afterwards

c.1300, from afterward (q.v.) + adverbial genitive -s; originally a Northern form.



Old English æftanweard, from æftan "after" (see aft) + -weard suffix indicating direction (see -ward); nautical use as aftward, then expanded by influence of after; variant afterwards shows adverbial genitive.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper