Definition of where in English:

where

interrogative adverb

  • 1In or to what place or position.

    ‘where do you live?’
    with preposition ‘where do you come from?’
    ‘I wonder where they will take us to’
    • ‘Be aware of it, but make sure when you leave, you know where the sources of information and resources are.’
    • ‘With the children settled into new homes, their families at last heard where they were.’
    • ‘But you're not in a position to say where he was whilst this was going on?’
    • ‘Directors instantly knew where they were in the pecking order by a quick look at the seating plan.’
    • ‘The platform was then moved and the mice had to remember where it was last positioned.’
    • ‘No prizes, even though it's Christmas, for guessing where that source of supply is.’
    • ‘That then takes one on the step of identifying where the pollution source is to be found.’
    • ‘We all have a free choice as to where we shop, and, yes, I shop in Bolton myself.’
    • ‘The stroller started moving so I took the cover off and helped the baby sit up and see where we were.’
    • ‘The first thing they asked when entering the small house was where the dustbin was.’
    • ‘The concern for parents is where their children will go when the college closes.’
    • ‘What is wrong with parents wanting to choose where they send their children to school?’
    • ‘At some time will you give us the references to where the blood was found on Sako's garment?’
    • ‘I live in a terraced house so where am I supposed to garage this essential part of modern living?’
    • ‘No one saw what happened to the company director, or exactly where he was when the wall of water struck.’
    • ‘We'd be as anxious and pleased to see and read where our former players are playing and how.’
    • ‘But it is completely wrong for students to allow finances to decide where they study.’
    • ‘It seems that if a man leaves his house without saying where he is going, he is assumed to be looking for a girlfriend.’
    • ‘If anyone knows where to source this vegetable in the San Francisco area, please let me know.’
    • ‘Mistara was supposed to meet Scott here and see where she would be positioned next.’
    1. 1.1 In what direction or respect.
      ‘where does the argument lead?’
      • ‘I know you are but what I am asking you is, can you tell me where I am wrong in that analysis?’
      • ‘Suddenly people started talking back to us and telling us where we were going wrong.’
      • ‘This type of focus helps the government out, letting it know where investment should be directed.’
      • ‘We know where we went wrong and it is important that we dealt with it straight away.’
      • ‘It's amazing how you can see exactly where you're going wrong when it's staring you in the face.’
      • ‘It can be held in one hand and can make it easier to direct where the floss is going than using your fingers.’
      • ‘Reviewing past models is useful in identifying where the Strokes have gone so very wrong.’
      • ‘It will take a long time for them to get over this defeat and analyse where it all went wrong.’
      • ‘Not sure where it all went wrong, but it quite clearly did, and horribly so.’
      • ‘He would play the expert, telling Lee how to play football and where he went wrong.’
      • ‘Tell them where their strategy is going wrong and damaging the business and its future prospects.’
      • ‘While it is possible to see where this argument is leading, it makes little sense.’
      • ‘Bully for you go visit a drug rehabilitation centre and tell the others where they went wrong.’
      • ‘I have had chats with him as a mate and as a teammate and I can tell him where he is going wrong and what he is doing right.’
      • ‘We have worked out where we were going wrong, and I believe we are back on the right track now.’
      • ‘Fans, former players and mangers are now demanding to know where it all went wrong.’
      • ‘Further directions on where exactly to point it are not available as of time of press.’
      • ‘We describe how the project and its evaluation were set up and examine where the project went wrong.’
      • ‘Spent more time explaining why everyone was wrong than actually seeing where his company ought to go.’
      • ‘So, for those who speak out or bring legal cases against the Church, where does it all go wrong?’
    2. 1.2 In or from what source.
      ‘where did you read that?’
      • ‘She assured me that the gossip was untrue and demanded to know where I'd heard it.’
      • ‘She couldn't remember where she'd heard that saying, but it seemed to be a good one.’
      • ‘Yadda yadda yadda, Jews trying to control the world, where have I heard that one before?’
      • ‘It was the writer's recommendations of where else to read, as much as it was something to read in and of itself.’
      • ‘If you want an outside bet at a very big price, remember where you read this information first.’
      • ‘Suddenly, you begin to hear quite clearly where Sonic Youth and others took their cues from.’
      • ‘Well, those people are quite wrong and one day I will let readers know where to find it.’
      • ‘On paper you knew what they liked to drink or where they'd heard about the show, but there was no intimacy.’
      • ‘When jamskating hits Britain in a few months, remember where you read about it first.’
      • ‘If you don't hear music at home or at school then where will you hear it?’
      • ‘So if they resurrect any more dead characters remember where you heard it first.’
    3. 1.3 In or to what situation or condition.
      ‘just where is all this leading us?’
      • ‘But where is all this leading us?’
      • ‘So where does that leave us?’

relative adverb

  • 1At, in, or to which (used after reference to a place or situation)

    ‘I first saw him in Paris, where I lived in the early sixties’
    • ‘At last, he has been allowed to take up his office in the House of Commons, where he has raised the Irish flag.’
    • ‘His estate included a house where he was living at the time of his death.’
    • ‘She explained that this was the langur hall, where free meals are served round the clock.’
    • ‘He thinks more and more shoppers are simply heading to a shopping centre, where parking is free and easy.’
    • ‘So, what would happen in a free market where anyone could ply their trade in a cab?’
    • ‘There was a site on the Internet where you could download free audio-editing software.’
    • ‘Not only is he in the position where he has to make tough decisions, he doesn't cop out of them.’
    • ‘I wish for all my children a world where they will be free from hatred towards one another.’
    • ‘Of all the parks in the city, this may be the only one where people feel free to walk on the grass.’
    • ‘Though she did not marry the father, he built her a house where she lived and raised their son.’
    • ‘She has two younger brothers and we all like to live as a family in a house where tennis is rarely mentioned.’
    • ‘The second reason is that Fleming gives a reference to the archive where the document can be found in Munich.’
    • ‘His biggest fear is losing the heavily mortgaged family house, where he lives alone.’
    • ‘They run the Baen Free Library, which is a place where you can download free, complete books.’
    • ‘Even here, where free speech is a right unless the mayor doesn't like you, I cannot get a hearing.’
    • ‘I love the idea of America, where people are free and we have a representational democracy.’
    • ‘He could not even find the house where he had lived with his parents and sister.’
    • ‘Anyone know of a car where the speedometer is directly in front of the driver?’
    • ‘There is no trace of the house where the grandparents lived for more than 40 years.’
    • ‘At the same time, the Post was the first paper where I felt free to write as a gay man.’
  • 2The place or situation in which.

    ‘this is where I live’
    • ‘The Best Position is where an equal number of voters are to the left and to the right.’
    • ‘This only left the few holes directly above where the stream first disappeared.’
    • ‘Grand Boulevard is about grand homes and this is where big houses should be, he said.’
    • ‘If that's where your house previously stood, however, you have nowhere to build a new one.’
    • ‘We educate them to respect where they are but to keep their identity as Muslims.’
    • ‘Coaching respects where you are right now, but will take you further, faster, easier.’
    • ‘The Matrix was where I first heard about Invis, and in a lot of ways got me into comics.’
    • ‘A direct initiative is where registered voters vote on the proposal put forward.’
    • ‘But here is where it all went wrong, Lynne.’
    • ‘This, you might be relieved to hear, is where the protests and the sausages come in.’
    • ‘This bill should be consigned to the rubbish bin because it is wrong and that is where it belongs.’
    • ‘His father and advisor began walking in the opposite direction from where Rheyce lay in wait.’
    • ‘In the evening he served a lavish meal of goat and rice, and gave us directions to where we could find his sons and camels.’
    • ‘Dance in it for twelve minutes, even though you can't hear any music from where you are.’
    • ‘I live with my mom in Braintree, south of Boston, and if I get it wrong then these guys know where to find me.’
    • ‘He twitches the fabric to free it from where it has snagged and pulls the curtains open wide.’
    • ‘One jumped down and examined the ground and looked directly to where they were hiding.’
    • ‘At that moment one of the colossal dark shapes passes directly under where we are standing.’
    • ‘For three nights in a row, a dozen of his men lay in ambush near where the source said the men would pass.’
    • ‘This is where the efforts are directed at providing a higher level of service and comfort.’
    1. 2.1 In or to a place or situation in which.
      ‘sit where I can see you’
      ‘where people were concerned, his threshold of boredom was low’
      • ‘I never buy a product unless it is cruelty free and I always try to buy free range where I can.’
      • ‘If the new law allows us to direct our compassion where it is truly deserved, then it can be judged a success.’
      • ‘I like to go where the breeze blows free and the windows of the heart are not shut.’
      • ‘He recycled where possible from the site and sourced secondhand items where necessary.’
      • ‘Any French foreign minister knows what he is talking about where French Africa is concerned.’
      • ‘Mr Bernau said he accepted the fees as a part of the open market, but urged people to use a free machine where possible.’
      • ‘Why couldn't they have placed the reception team directly opposite the door where you can see it?’
      • ‘Sometimes I am clever, sometimes not, it seems where tax is concerned I am not very clever at all.’
      • ‘The council adopted a policy of merging schools where the position of headteacher at one falls vacant.’
      • ‘At another, she rails against a world in which development is not directed where it is most needed.’
      • ‘Once you've got his attention, you start directing his attention where you want it to go.’
      • ‘Even where there is no direct prejudice, there may be unfair preferences which should not count.’
      • ‘That does not mean they have not availed themselves of legal arguments where it was advantageous to do so.’
      • ‘I was trying to place myself in the right position and put myself where I had to make a move.’
      • ‘Given the mood Her Majesty must be in where dates are concerned, he did well to get the nod.’
      • ‘I only have to look at other members who now have that security where food is concerned.’
      • ‘The paper is positioned just where his face ought to be, and all I see of him are two ears and a tuft of hair.’
      • ‘Am I the only one thought beginning to feel somewhat voyeuristic where Ahmed is concerned?’
      • ‘Follow up on phone messages left for you and offer them free advice where possible.’
      • ‘Why can't football fans have this sort of outlook, and give respect where it is due?’
    2. 2.2 In or to any place in which; wherever.
      ‘he was free to go where he liked’
      • ‘We went where there were free samples, elbowing each other out of the way to get to them.’
      • ‘It was the wonderful, free feeling of roaming where they liked, of waking up each day to a different view.’
      • ‘The focus puller was the biggest hero on our set because we were very free to move where we wanted to.’
      • ‘We stayed out in the countryside for six months, finding empty houses and crashing where we could.’
      • ‘The Jews in Domachevo were free to go where they liked and do what they wanted, subject to no restriction.’

Origin

Old English hwǣr, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch waar and German wo.

Pronunciation

where

/wɛː/