• synonyms


[bih-kawz, -koz, -kuhz]
See more synonyms for because on Thesaurus.com
  1. for the reason that; due to the fact that: The boy was absent because he was ill.
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  1. Informal. (used directly before a noun, adjective, verb, interjection, etc., to convey a very concise rationale, excuse, or explanation): We’re a little like monkeys because evolution. He doesn’t practice enough: because lazy. I love doughnuts because yum!
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  1. because of, by reason of; due to: Schools were closed because of heavy snowfall.
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Origin of because

1275–1325; Middle English bi cause. See by1, cause

Synonym study

1. Because, as, since, for, inasmuch as agree in implying a reason for an occurrence or action. Because introduces a direct reason: I was sleeping because I was tired. As and since are so casual as to imply merely circumstances attendant on the main statement: As (or since ) I was tired, I was sleeping. The reason, proof, or justification introduced by for is like an afterthought or a parenthetical statement: I was sleeping, for I was tired. The more formal inasmuch as implies concession; the main statement is true in view of the circumstances introduced by this conjunction: Inasmuch as I was tired, it seemed best to sleep.

Usage note

1. See reason.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for because

as, being, considering, for, over, seeing, since, through, whereas

British Dictionary definitions for because


  1. (subordinating) on account of the fact that; on account of being; sincebecause it's so cold we'll go home
  2. because of (preposition) on account ofI lost my job because of her
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Word Origin for because

C14 bi cause, from bi by + cause


See reason
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 because


c.1300, bi cause "by cause," modeled on French par cause. Originally a phrase, often followed by a subordinate clause introduced by that or why. One word from c.1400. As an adverb from late 14c. Clipped form cause attested in writing by mid-15c.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper