or O.K., o·kay
[ oh-key, oh-key, oh-key ]
/ ˈoʊˈkeɪ, ˌoʊˈkeɪ, ˈoʊˌkeɪ /
all right; proceeding normally; satisfactory or under control: Things are OK at the moment.
correct, permissible, or acceptable; meeting standards: Is this suit OK to wear to a formal party?
doing well or in good health; managing adequately: She's been OK since the operation.
adequate but unexceptional or unremarkable; tolerable: The job they did was OK, nothing more.
estimable, dependable, or trustworthy; likable: an OK person.
all right; well enough; successfully; fine: She'll manage OK on her own. He sings OK, but he can't tap dance.
(used as an affirmative response) yes; surely.
(used as an interrogative or interrogative tag) all right?; do you agree?
(used to express agreement, understanding, acceptance, or the like): OK, I'll get it for you.
(used as an introductory or transitional expletive): OK, now where were we?
noun, plural OK's.
an approval, agreement, or endorsement: They gave their OK to her leave of absence.
verb (used with object), OK'd, OK'ing.
to put one's endorsement on or indicate one's approval of (a request, piece of copy, bank check, etc.); authorize; initial: Would you OK my application?
Origin of OK
initials of a facetious folk phonetic spelling, e.g., oll or orl korrect representing all correct, first attested in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1839, then used in 1840 by Democrat partisans of Martin Van Buren during his election campaign, who allegedly named their organization, the O.K. Club, in allusion to the initials of Old Kinderhook, Van Buren's nickname, derived from his birthplace Kinderhook, New York
usage note for OK
Few Americanisms have been more successful than ok, which survived the political campaign of 1840 that fostered it, quickly lost its political significance, and went on to develop use as a verb, adverb, noun, and interjection. The expression was well known in England by the 1880s. Today ok has achieved worldwide recognition and use. It occurs in all but the most formal speech and writing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for o.k. (1 of 2)
/ (ˌəʊˈkeɪ) informal /
an expression of approval, agreement, etc
adjective, adverb (usually postpositive)
in good or satisfactory condition
permissableis it O.K. if I go home now?
acceptable but not outstandingthe party was O.K.
verb O.K.s, O.K.ing (ˌəʊˈkeɪɪŋ) or O.K.ed (ˌəʊˈkeɪd)
(tr) to approve or endorse
noun plural O.K.s
approval or agreement
Also: OK, o.k., okay
Word Origin for O.K.
C19: perhaps from o (ll) k (orrect), jocular alteration of all correct
British Dictionary definitions for o.k. (2 of 2)
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