[ nou ]
See synonyms for now on
  1. at the present time or moment: You are now using a dictionary.

  2. without further delay; immediately; at once: Either do it now or not at all.

  1. at this time or juncture in some period under consideration or in some course of proceedings described: The case was now ready for the jury.

  2. at the time or moment immediately past: I saw him just now on the street.

  3. in these present times; nowadays: Now you rarely see horse-drawn carriages.

  4. under the present or existing circumstances; as matters stand: I see now what you meant.

  5. (used to introduce a statement or question): Now, you don't really mean that.

  6. (used to strengthen a command, entreaty, or the like): Now stop that!

  1. inasmuch as; since: Now you're here, why not stay for dinner?

  1. the present time or moment: Up to now no one has volunteered.

  1. up-to-the-minute; encompassing the latest ideas, fads, or fashions: the now look; the now generation.

Idioms about now

  1. now and again, occasionally.: Also now and then.

  2. now that, inasmuch as; since: Now that she is rich and famous, she is constantly being besieged by appeals for aid.

Origin of now

First recorded before 900; 1965–70 for def. 11; Middle English; Old English nū, cognate with Old Norse, Gothic nū; akin to German nun, Latin num, Sanskrit nu, Greek nú, nûn

Other words from now

  • nowness, noun

Words Nearby now

Other definitions for NOW (2 of 2)

[ nou ] Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use now in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for now


/ (naʊ) /

  1. at or for the present time or moment

  2. at this exact moment; immediately

  1. in these times; nowadays

  2. given the present circumstances: now we'll have to stay to the end

  3. (preceded by just) very recently: he left just now

  4. (often preceded by just) very soon: he is leaving just now

  5. now and again, now and then, every now and again or every now and then occasionally; on and off

  6. for now for the time being

  7. now now! (interjection) an exclamation used to rebuke or pacify someone

  8. now then

    • (sentence connector) used to preface an important remark, the next step in an argument, etc

    • (interjection) an expression of mild reproof: now then, don't tease!

  1. (subordinating often foll by that) seeing that; since it has become the case that: now you're in charge, things will be better

sentence connector
    • used as a transitional particle or hesitation word: now, I can't really say

    • used for emphasis: now listen to this

    • used at the end of a command, esp in dismissal: run along, now

  1. the present moment or time: now is the time to go

  1. informal of the moment; fashionable: the now look is street fashion

Origin of now

Old English nū; compare Old Saxon nū, German nun, Latin nunc, Greek nu

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with now


In addition to the idioms beginning with now

  • now and again
  • now or never, it's
  • now that
  • now you're talking

also see:

  • any day (now)
  • every now and then
  • here and now
  • just now

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.