at the present time or moment: You are now using a dictionary.
without further delay; immediately; at once: Either do it now or not at all.
at this time or juncture in some period under consideration or in some course of proceedings described: The case was now ready for the jury.
at the time or moment immediately past: I saw him just now on the street.
in these present times; nowadays: Now you rarely see horse-drawn carriages.
under the present or existing circumstances; as matters stand: I see now what you meant.
(used to introduce a statement or question): Now, you don't really mean that.
(used to strengthen a command, entreaty, or the like): Now stop that!
inasmuch as; since: Now you're here, why not stay for dinner?
the present time or moment: Up to now no one has volunteered.
up-to-the-minute; encompassing the latest ideas, fads, or fashions: the now look; the now generation.
now and again, occasionally. Also, now and then.
now that, inasmuch as; since: Now that she is rich and famous, she is constantly being besieged by appeals for aid.

before 900; 1965–70 for def 11; Middle English; Old English nū, cognate with Old Norse, Gothic nū; akin to German nun, Latin num, Sanskrit nu, Greek nú, nûn

nowness, noun

currently, immediately, momentarily, now, presently, soon (see synonym study at immediately)(see usage note at presently). Unabridged


organization for Women">National Organization for Women. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
now (naʊ)
1.  at or for the present time or moment
2.  at this exact moment; immediately
3.  in these times; nowadays
4.  given the present circumstances: now we'll have to stay to the end
5.  (preceded by just) very recently: he left just now
6.  (often preceded by just) very soon: he is leaving just now
7.  now and again, now and then, every now and again, every now and then occasionally; on and off
8.  for now for the time being
9.  (interjection) now now! an exclamation used to rebuke or pacify someone
10.  now then
 a.  (sentence connector) used to preface an important remark, the next step in an argument, etc
 b.  (interjection) an expression of mild reproof: now then, don't tease!
conj (often foll by that)
11.  seeing that; since it has become the case that: now you're in charge, things will be better
sentence connector
12.  a.  used as a transitional particle or hesitation word: now, I can't really say
 b.  used for emphasis: now listen to this
 c.  used at the end of a command, esp in dismissal: run along, now
13.  the present moment or time: now is the time to go
14.  informal of the moment; fashionable: the now look is street fashion
[Old English nū; compare Old Saxon nū, German nun, Latin nunc, Greek nu]

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. nu, common Gmc. (cf. O.N. nu, Du. nu, O.Fris. nu, Ger. nun, Goth. nu "now"), from PIE *nu (cf. Skt., Avestan nu, O.Pers. nuram, Hittite nuwa, Gk. nu, nun, L. nunc, O.C.S. nyne, Lith. nu, O.Ir. nu-). Often merely emphatic; non-temporal usage (cf. Now, then) was in O.E. The adj. meaning "up to date"
first recorded 1967.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
National Organization for Women
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


In addition to the idioms beginning with now, also see any day (now); every now and then; here and now; just now.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Now is not the time for cutbacks, they should come, but in the future.
Northeast means it's now far cheaper than oil for home heating.
More violent and frequent storms, once merely a prediction of climate models,
  are now a matter of observation.
Ethical concerns now put more constraints on how scientists can elicit negative
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