or else


Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal, Idioms, Wikipedia.

else

 (ĕls)
adj.
1. Other; different: Ask somebody else.
2. Additional; more: Would you like anything else?
adv.
In a different or additional time, place, or manner: I always do it this way and I don't know how else it could be done. Where else do you want to go besides Miami?
Idiom:
or else
1. Used to indicate an alternative: We need to eat the leftovers or else buy more food.
2. Used to indicate negative consequences that will result if an action is not followed: We need to pay the bill, or else the electricity will be shut off.
3. Used after a command or demand to make a threat: Be there on time, or else!

[Middle English elles, from Old English; see al- in Indo-European roots.]
Usage Note: Else is often used redundantly in combination with prepositions such as but, except, and besides. The sentence No one else but Sam saw the accident would thus be better without else. · When a pronoun is followed by else, the possessive form is generally written with the 's following else: That must be someone else's (not someone's else) book. Both who else's and whose else are in use, but not whose else's: Who else's book could it have been? Whose else could it have been? · Sometimes the or is dropped from or else so that else functions as a conjunction, as in George Eliot's "My brother is poor, and I want to look as much like him as I can, else he may feel distant from me." This usage is rare in Standard American English, however, and sounds informal or dialectal. See Usage Note at who.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adv.1.or else - in place of, or as an alternative to; "Felix became a herpetologist instead"; "alternatively we could buy a used car"
Translations
وإلا
eller ogsåellersi modsat fald
vagy különbenvagy pedig
annars; aî öîrum kosti; eîa òá aî

else

(els) adjective, adverb
besides; other than that already mentioned. What else can I do? Can we go anywhere else?; He took someone else's pencil.
ˌelseˈwhere adverb
in, or to, another place; somewhere or anywhere else. You must look elsewhere if you want a less tiring job.
or else
otherwise. He must have missed the train – or else he's ill.
References in classic literature ?
failed to obtain her recognition, also on temperamental grounds - either because they bored her, or else because they stood in the way of her scorns and sympathies.
That was somebody else's whoop, or else I was turned around.
You MUST have meant some mischief, or else you'd have signed your name like an honest man.