why Meaning, definition in Cambridge English Dictionary
Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

Meaning of "why" - English Dictionary

See all translations

whyadverb

uk   us   /waɪ/
A1 for what reason: "I'm going home." "Why?" Why did you choose to live in London? Why wait? Let's leave now. Why should I help him - he never helps me? Why is it that I find chocolate so addictive? The police asked me to explain why I hadn't reported the accident sooner. I don't know why she isn't here. Quite why he isn't here today is a mystery. There is no reason why we shouldn't succeed.
More examples

whyexclamation

uk   us   /waɪ/ mainly US or old-fashioned

whynoun

uk   us   /waɪ/
the whys and (the) wherefores the reasons for something: I know very little about the whys and the wherefores of the situation.
Translations of “why”
in Arabic لِماذا…
in Korean 왜…
in Malaysian mengapa…
in French pourquoi…
in Turkish neden, niçin, ne diye…
in Italian perché…
in Chinese (Traditional) 為甚麼…
in Russian почему?…
in Polish dlaczego, czemu…
in Vietnamese tại sao…
in Spanish por qué…
in Portuguese por que, por quê…
in Thai ทำไม…
in German warum…
in Catalan per què…
in Japanese どうして, なぜ…
in Indonesian mengapa…
in Chinese (Simplified) 为什么…
(Definition of why from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of why?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “why” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day
straight

the straight part of a racetrack (= the track on which competitors race)

Word of the Day

Are you a glass-half-full person? (Everyday Idioms)
Are you a glass-half-full person? (Everyday Idioms)
by Kate Woodford,
July 29, 2015
A reader of this blog recently asked for a post on idioms that are used in everyday English. This seemed like a reasonable request. After all, if you are going to make the effort to learn a set of English idioms, you want those idioms to be useful. The question, then, was

Read More 

exoskeleton noun
exoskeleton noun
July 27, 2015
a robotic device which goes around the legs and part of the body of a person who cannot walk and allows them to move independently and in an upright position The device, known as an exoskeleton, is strapped to the outside of a person’s limbs and can then be controlled by them.

Read More