[af-ter, ahf-]
behind in place or position; following behind: men lining up one after the other.
later in time than; in succession to; at the close of: Tell me after supper. Day after day he came to work late.
subsequent to and in consequence of: After what has happened, I can never return.
below in rank or excellence; nearest to: Milton is usually placed after Shakespeare among English poets.
in imitation of or in imitation of the style of: to make something after a model; fashioned after Raphael.
in pursuit or search of; with or in desire for: I'm after a better job. Run after him!
concerning; about: to inquire after a person.
with the name of; for: He was named after his uncle.
in proportion to; in accordance with: He was a man after the hopes and expectations of his father.
according to the nature of; in conformity with; in agreement or unison with: He was a man after my own heart. He swore after the manner of his faith.
subsequent to and notwithstanding; in spite of: After all their troubles, they still manage to be optimistic.
behind; in the rear: Jill came tumbling after.
later in time; afterward: three hours after; happily ever after.
later in time; next; subsequent; succeeding: In after years we never heard from him.
Nautical, Aeronautics.
farther aft.
located closest to the stern or tail; aftermost: after hold; after mast.
including the stern or tail: the after part of a hull.
subsequent to the time that: after the boys left.
afters, British Informal. the final course of a meal, as pudding, ice cream, or the like; dessert.
after all, despite what has occurred or been assumed previously; nevertheless: I've discovered I can attend the meeting after all.

before 900; Middle English; Old English æfter; cognate with Old Frisian efter, Old Saxon, Old High German after, Gothic aftaro, Old Norse eptir; equivalent to æf- (see aft) + -ter suffix of comparison and polarity (cognate with Greek -teros)

1. See behind. Unabridged


1 [aft, ahft] Nautical, Aeronautics.
at, close to, or toward the stern or tail: Stow the luggage aft.
situated toward or at the stern or tail: The aft sail was luffing.

before 950; Middle English afte, Old English æftan from behind, equivalent to æf- opposite + -t- suffix of uncertain value + -an suffix marking motion from; cognate with Old Frisian efta, Old Saxon, Old High German aftan, Gothic aftana, Old Norse aptan, Greek opís(s)ō behind; not akin to Greek apó off Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
aft (ɑːft)
adv, —adj
chiefly nautical towards or at the stern or rear: the aft deck; aft of the engines
[C17: perhaps a shortened form of earlier abaft]

after (ˈɑːftə)
1.  following in time; in succession to: after dinner; time after time
2.  following; behind: they entered one after another
3.  in pursuit or search of: chasing after a thief; he's only after money
4.  concerning: to inquire after his health
5.  considering: after what you have done, you shouldn't complain
6.  next in excellence or importance to: he ranked Jonson after Shakespeare
7.  in imitation of; in the manner of: a statue after classical models
8.  in accordance with or in conformity to: a man after her own heart
9.  with a name derived from: Mary was named after her grandmother
10.  (US) past (the hour of): twenty after three
11.  after all
 a.  in spite of everything: it's only a game, after all
 b.  in spite of expectations, efforts, etc: he won the race after all!
12.  after you please go, enter, etc, before me
13.  at a later time; afterwards
14.  coming afterwards; in pursuit
15.  nautical further aft; sternwards
16.  (subordinating) at a time later than that at which: he came after I had left
17.  nautical further aft: the after cabin
[Old English æfter; related to Old Norse aptr back, eptir after, Old High German aftar]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. æftan "behind, farthest back," from superl. of O.E. æf, af, of "off," from P.Gmc. *af-, from PIE root *apo- "off, away" (cf. Goth. aftana "from behind;" see apo-). Now purely nautical.

O.E. æfter "after, next, following in time," from O.E. of "off" (see apo-) + -ter a comparative suffix; thus originally meaning "more away, farther off." After hours "after regular working hours" is from 1861. Afterwit "wisdom that comes too late" is attested from c.1500
but seems to have fallen from use, despite being more needed now than ever.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
American Federation of Teachers
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Criminal law changed surprisingly little after the attacks.
Migration after the global economic crisis is different, but still continuing.
See photos before and after the transformation here.
After starting my day with a fully-charged phone, my battery was dead before
  the end of the workday.
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