[wurth-hwahyl, -wahyl]
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Origin of worthwhile

First recorded in 1865–70; worth1 + while
Related formsworth·while·ness, noun

Synonyms for worthwhile

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

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British Dictionary definitions for worthwhile


  1. sufficiently important, rewarding, or valuable to justify time or effort spent
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 worthwhile

1884, from worth (adj.) + while. Phrase worth the while is attested from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper