Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.
Related to already: All ready


so soon; previously: Oh, but I’ve already eaten.
Not to be confused with:
all ready – everyone is prepared, available, or willing: We are all ready to go to dinner now.
Abused, Confused, & Misused Words by Mary Embree Copyright © 2007, 2013 by Mary Embree


1. By this or a specified time: The children were already asleep when we got home.
2. So soon: Are you quitting already?
3. Informal Used as an intensive: Be quiet already. Enough already.

[Middle English alredi : al, all; see all + redi, ready; see ready.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. by or before a stated or implied time: he is already here.
2. at a time earlier than expected: is it ten o'clock already?.
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ɔlˈrɛd i)

1. previously; prior to or at some specified or implied time.
2. so soon; so early.
3. Informal. (used as an intensifier to express exasperation or impatience): Let's go already!
[1350–1400; Middle English al redy literally, “all ready”]
usage: The written forms already and all ready have distinct uses and meanings. already means “previously” (The plane had already landed) or “so soon” (It's December already). The phrase all ready means “entirely ready, prepared”: I was all ready to leave for church.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. referring to an action

You use already to say that something has happened before now, or that it has happened sooner than expected. When referring to an action, most speakers of British English use a perfect form with already. They put already after have, has, or had, or at the end of a clause.

He had already left when I arrived.
I've had tea already, thank you.

Many speakers of American English, and some speakers of British English, use the past simple instead of the present perfect. For example, instead of saying 'I have already met him', they say 'I already met him' or 'I met him already'.

You already woke up the kids.
I told you already – he's a professor.
2. referring to a situation

Already is also used to say that a situation exists at an earlier time than expected.

If there is no auxiliary verb, you put already in front of the verb, unless the verb is be.

She already knows the answer.
By the middle of June the society already had more than 1000 members.

If the verb is be, you put already after it.

It was already dark.
Tickets are already available online.

If there is an auxiliary verb, you put already after the auxiliary verb.

This species is already considered endangered.

If there is more than one auxiliary verb, you put already after the first one.

Portable computers can already be plugged into TV sets.

You can put already at the beginning of a sentence for emphasis.

Already the company is three quarters of the way to the target.
Collins COBUILD English Usage © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 2004, 2011, 2012
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adv.1.already - prior to a specified or implied timealready - prior to a specified or implied time; "she has already graduated"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


adverb before now, before, previously, at present, by now, by then, even now, by this time, just now, by that time, heretofore, as of now They've spent nearly a billion dollars on it already.
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002


At a time in the past:
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
بِالفِعْلسَابِقَاً، قَبْل الآن، قَد، الآنقَبْل الوَقْت المُتَوَقَّع
déjàd’ores et déjà
òegaròegar, strax
predsa už


[ɔːlˈredɪ] ADVya
Liz had already goneLiz ya se había ido
is it finished already?¿ya está terminado?
that's enough already! (US) → ¡basta!, ¡ya está bien!
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


[ˌɔːlˈrɛdi] advdéjà
Liz had already gone → Liz était déjà partie.
Is it five o'clock already? → Il est déjà cinq heures ?
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


advschon; I’ve already seen it, I’ve seen it alreadyich habe es schon gesehen
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


[ɔːlˈrɛdɪ] advgià
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995


(oːlˈredi) adverb
1. before a particular time; previously. I had already gone when Tom arrived; I don't want that book – I've read it already.
2. before the expected time. Are you leaving already?; He hasn't gone already, has he?
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.


بِالفِعْل již allerede schon ήδη ya jo déjà već già すでに 이미 reeds allerede już уже redan แล้ว zaten đã 已经
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009


adv. ya.
English-Spanish Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012
Collins Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009
References in classic literature ?
I have learned since that, so far from my being the first discoverer of the Martian overthrow, several such wanderers as myself had already discovered this on the previous night.
He put this down to his own credit, unaware that Metrov, who had already discussed his theory over and over again with all his intimate friends, talked of it with special eagerness to every new person, and in general was eager to talk to anyone of any subject that interested him, even if still obscure to himself.
I have already said that this magnificent function was being given on the occasion of the retirement of M.
I already felt myself falling in love with its unseen owner.
[The parts of Tragedy which must be treated as elements of the whole have been already mentioned.
A third of the visitors had already arrived, but the Rostovs, who were to be present, were still hurrying to get dressed.
Must not whatever CAN run its course of all things, have already run along that lane?
It both protected the advances already made to the north, and helped to dominate the sea coast.
The place of the interview between Miss Temple and the Indian has already been described as one of those plat forms of rock, which form a sort of terrace in the mountains of that country, and the face of it, we have said, was both high and perpendicular.
But he said: 'You have dipped your finger into the water, this time it may pass, but take care you do not again let anything go in.' By daybreak the boy was already sitting by the well and watching it.
"I have already explained to you that what is out of the common is usually a guide rather than a hindrance.
Edward Rose, the interpreter, whose sinister looks we have already mentioned, was denounced by this secret informer as a designing, treacherous scoundrel, who was tampering with the fidelity of certain of the men, and instigating them to a flagrant piece of treason.