Meaning of “after” in the English Dictionary

"after" in English

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uk /ˈɑːf.tər/ us /ˈæf.tɚ/

A1 following in time, place, or order:

Let's go for a walk after breakfast.
Some people believe in life after death.
Her name came after mine on the list.
There's a good film on the day after tomorrow.
She waited until well after midnight.
US It's a quarter after four.
She just keeps on working, day after day, week after week (= continuously).
We've had meeting after meeting (= many meetings) to discuss this point.
Jessie seemed very small after (= in comparison with) Michael's children.
After (= despite) everything I've done for you, is this the way you treat me?
After (= because of) what she did to me, I'll never trust her again.
The children have to learn to tidy up after themselves (= after they have made things untidy).
She slammed the door after (= behind) her.
We ran after (= followed) him, but he escaped.
Could you lock up after you (= when you leave), please?
be after sb/sth informal

to be looking for someone or something or trying to find or get him, her, or it:

The police are after him.
I'm after a tie to go with this shirt.
I'm sure she's after my husband.
He's after Jane's job (= wants it for himself).
after you

used to say politely that someone can go in front of you or serve themselves with food before you:

"Can I pour you some coffee?" "Oh no, after you."

typical of or similar to the style of:

a concerto after Mozart

C2 used when giving someone or something the same name as another person or thing:

He was named Mark after his grandfather.

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uk /ˈɑːf.tər/ us /ˈæf.tɚ/


uk /ˈɑːf.tər/ us /ˈæf.tɚ/


uk /ɑːf.tər-/ us /æf.tɚ-/

(Definition of “after” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"after" in American English

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us /ˈæf·tər/

after preposition (FOLLOWING)

following in time, place, or order:

What do you want to do after breakfast?
I expect to return to work after the baby comes.
Repeat these words after me.
I’ll see you the day after tomorrow.
It’s ten minutes after four.
Week after week (= For many weeks), he’s been too busy to help.

after preposition (BECAUSE)

as a result of; because:

After what she did to me, I’ll never trust her again.
She’s named after her aunt (= given the same name in her honor).

after preposition (DESPITE)


Even after everything that’s happened here, his behavior seems odd.

after preposition (WANTING)

wanting to find or have:

The police are after him.
He’s after Jane’s job.
conjunction us /ˈæf·tər/

The house was empty for three months after they moved out.
adverb [ not gradable ] us /ˈæf·tər/

Hilary drove up and Nick arrived soon after.


(Definition of “after” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)