[ with-out, with- ]
See synonyms for: withoutwithouts on Thesaurus.com

  1. with the absence, omission, or avoidance of; not with; with no or none of; lacking: without help; without shoes; without her helping me; without him to help.

  2. free from; excluding: a world without hunger.

  1. not accompanied by: Don't go without me.

  2. at, on, or to the outside of; outside of: both within and without the house or the city.

  3. beyond the compass, limits, range, or scope of (now used chiefly in opposition to within): whether within or without the law.

  1. in or into an exterior or outer place; outside.

  2. outside a house, building, etc.: The carriage awaits without.

  1. lacking something implied or understood: We must take this or go without.

  2. as regards the outside; externally.

  1. the outside of a place, region, area, room, etc.

  1. Midland and Southern U.S. unless.

Origin of without

First recorded before 900; Middle English withouten, Old English withūtan (adverb and preposition); equivalent to with + out

Words Nearby without

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use without in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for without


/ (wɪˈðaʊt) /

  1. not having: a traveller without much money

  2. not accompanied by: he came without his wife

  1. not making use of: it is not easy to undo screws without a screwdriver

  2. (foll by a verbal noun or noun phrase) not, while not, or after not: she can sing for two minutes without drawing breath

  3. archaic on the outside of

  1. formal outside; outwardly

  1. not standard unless: don't come without you have some money

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 without


In addition to the idioms beginning with without

  • without a leg to stand on
  • without a stitch on
  • without batting an eye
  • without doubt
  • without fail
  • without further ado
  • without question
  • without so much as

also see:

  • absent without leave
  • do without
  • get along without
  • go without saying
  • no smoke without fire

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