after all


[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


the whole of (used in referring to quantity, extent, or duration): all the cake; all the way; all year.
the whole number of (used in referring to individuals or particulars, taken collectively): all students.
the greatest possible (used in referring to quality or degree): with all due respect; with all speed.
every: all kinds; all sorts.
any; any whatever: beyond all doubt.
nothing but; only: The coat is all wool.
dominated by or as if by the conspicuous possession or use of a particular feature: The colt was all legs. They were all ears, listening attentively to everything she said.
Chiefly Pennsylvania German. all gone; consumed; finished: The pie is all.
the whole quantity or amount: He ate all of the peanuts. All are gone.
the whole number; every one: all of us.
everything: Is that all you want to say? All is lost.
one's whole interest, energy, or property: to give one's all; to lose one's all.
(often initial capital letter) the entire universe.
wholly; entirely; completely: all alone.
only; exclusively: He spent his income all on pleasure.
each; apiece: The score was one all.
Archaic. even; just.
above all, before everything else; chiefly: Above all, the little girl wanted a piano.
after all, in spite of the circumstances; notwithstanding: He came in time after all.
all at once. once ( def 14 ).
all but, almost; very nearly: These batteries are all but dead.
all in, Northern and Western U.S. very tired; exhausted: We were all in at the end of the day.
all in all,
everything considered; in general: All in all, her health is greatly improved.
altogether: There were twelve absentees all in all.
everything; everything regarded as important: Painting became his all in all.
all in hand, Printing, Journalism. (of the copy for typesetting a particular article, book, issue, etc.) in the possession of the compositor.
all in the wind, Nautical. too close to the wind.
all out, with all available means or effort: We went all out to win the war.
all over,
finished; done; ended.
everywhere; in every part.
in every respect; typically.
all standing, Nautical.
in such a way and so suddenly that sails or engines are still set to propel a vessel forward: The ship ran aground all standing.
fully clothed: The crew turned in all standing.
fully equipped, as a vessel.
all that, remarkably; entirely; decidedly (used in negative constructions): It's not all that different from your other house.
all the better, more advantageous; so much the better: If the sun shines it will be all the better for our trip.
all there, Informal. mentally competent; not insane or feeble-minded: Some of his farfetched ideas made us suspect that he wasn't all there.
all the same. same ( def 9 ).
all told. told ( def 2 ).
all up,
Printing, Journalism. (of copy) completely set in type.
Informal. with no vestige of hope remaining: It's all up with George—they've caught him.
and all, together with every other associated or connected attribute, object, or circumstance: What with the snow and all, we may be a little late.
at all,
in the slightest degree: I wasn't surprised at all.
for any reason: Why bother at all?
in any way: no offense at all.
for all (that), in spite of; notwithstanding: For all that, it was a good year.
in all, all included; all together: a hundred guests in all.
once and for all, for the last time; finally: The case was settled once and for all when the appeal was denied.

before 900; Middle English al, plural alle; Old English eal(l); cognate with Gothic alls, Old Norse allr, Old Frisian, Dutch, Middle Low German al, Old Saxon, Old High German al(l) (German all); if < *ol-no-, equivalent to Welsh oll and akin to Old Irish uile < *ol-io-; cf. almighty

all, awl (see usage note at the current entry).

2. every one of, each of. 14. totally, utterly, fully.

Expressions like all the farther and all the higher occur chiefly in informal speech: This is all the farther the bus goes. That's all the higher she can jump. Elsewhere as far as and as high as are generally used: This is as far as the bus goes. That's as high as she can jump.
Although some object to the inclusion of of in such phrases as all of the students and all of the contracts and prefer to omit it, the construction is entirely standard.
See also already, alright, altogether. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
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]

all (ɔːl)
1.  a.  the whole quantity or amount of; totality of; every one of a class: all the rice; all men are mortal
 b.  (as pronoun; functioning as sing or plural): all of it is nice; all are welcome
 c.  (in combination with a noun used as a modifier): an all-ticket match; an all-amateur tournament; an all-night sitting
2.  the greatest possible: in all earnestness
3.  any whatever: to lose all hope of recovery; beyond all doubt
4.  above all most of all; especially
5.  after all See after
6.  all along all the time
7.  all but almost; nearly: all but dead
8.  all of no less or smaller than: she's all of thirteen years
9.  all over
 a.  finished; at an end: the affair is all over between us
 b.  over the whole area (of something); everywhere (in, on, etc): all over England
 c.  Also (Irish): all out typically; representatively (in the phrase that's me (you, him, us, them,etc) all over)
 d.  unduly effusive towards
 e.  sport in a dominant position over
10.  See all in
11.  all in all
 a.  everything considered: all in all, it was a great success
 b.  the object of one's attention or interest: you are my all in all
12.  informal (usually used with a negative) all that, that (intensifier): she's not all that intelligent
13.  ( foll by a comparative adjective or adverb ) all the so much (more or less) than otherwise: we must work all the faster now
14.  all too definitely but regrettably: it's all too true
15.  and all
 a.  informal (Brit) as well; too: and you can take that smile off your face and all
 b.  (South African) a parenthetical filler phrase used at the end of a statement to make a sl ight pause in speaking
16.  informal and all that
 a.  and similar or associated things; et cetera: coffee, tea, and all that will be served in the garden
 b.  used as a filler or to make what precedes more vague: in this sense, it often occurs with concessive force: she was sweet and pretty and all that, but I still didn't like her
 c.  See that
17.  as all that as one might expect or hope: she's not as pretty as all that, but she has personality
18.  at all
 a.  (used with a negative or in a question) in any way whatsoever or to any extent or degree: I didn't know that at all
 b.  even so; anyway: I'm surprised you came at all
19.  informal be all for to be strongly in favour of
20.  informal chiefly (US) be all that to be exceptionally good, talented, or attractive
21.  for all
 a.  in so far as; to the extent that: for all anyone knows, he was a baron
 b.  notwithstanding: for all my pushing, I still couldn't move it
22.  for all that in spite of that: he was a nice man for all that
23.  in all altogether: there were five of them in all
24.  (in scores of games) apiece; each: the score at half time was three all
25.  completely: all alone
26.  informal be all … used for emphasis when introducing direct speech or nonverbal communication: he was all, 'I'm not doing that'
n (preceded by my, your, his, etc)
27.  (one's) complete effort or interest: to give your all; you are my all
28.  totality or whole
Related: pan-, panto-
[Old English eall; related to Old High German al, Old Norse allr, Gothic alls all]

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. 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.

O.E. eall "all, every, entire," from P.Gmc. *alnaz (cf. O.Fris., O.H.G. al, O.N. allr, Goth. alls), with no certain connection outside Gmc. All-fired (1837) is U.S. slang euphemism for hell-fired. First record of all out "to one's full powers" is 1880. All-star (adj.) is from 1889; all-American is from
1888, with ref. to baseball teams composed of the best players from the U.S. All-terrain vehicle first recorded 1970. All clear as a signal of "no danger" is recorded from 1902. All right, indicative of approval, is attested from 1953.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
  1. acute lymphocytic leukemia

  2. Albania—lek (currency)

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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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

after all

  1. Despite everything, nevertheless, as in The plane took off half an hour late but landed on time after all.

  2. After everything else has been considered, ultimately, as in Mary has final approval of the guest list; after all, it's her wedding. The two usages are pronounced differently, the first giving stress to the word after and the second to the word all. Both date from the early 1700s. Also see when all is said and done.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Idioms & Phrases
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