Meaning of “how do you do?” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"how do you do?" in British English

See all translations

how do you do?


A2 a formal greeting for someone that you have not met before:

"I'm Jack Stewart." "How do you do? I'm Angela Black."

how do you do


a difficult, worrying, and unpleasant situation:

"I had a row with my sister and now she's refusing to talk to me." "Well, that's a fine how do you do!"

(Definition of “how do you do?” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)