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as it were

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Definition of as it were

Seemingly, in a way, as in He was living in a dream world, as it were. A shortening of “as if it were so,” this idiom has been in use since Chaucer's time (he had it in his Nun's Priest's Tale, c. 1386). Also see so to speak.

QUIZ
QUIZ YOURSELF ON “ITS” VS. “IT’S”!
Apostrophes can be tricky; prove you know the difference between "it’s" and "its" in this crafty quiz!
Question 1 of 8
On the farm, the feed for chicks is significantly different from the roosters’; ______ not even comparable.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

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