or

or

1 [awr; unstressed er]
conjunction
1.
(used to connect words, phrases, or clauses representing alternatives): books or magazines; to be or not to be.
2.
(used to connect alternative terms for the same thing): the Hawaiian, or Sandwich, Islands.
3.
(used in correlation): either … or; or … or; whether … or.
4.
(used to correct or rephrase what was previously said): His autobiography, or rather memoirs, will soon be ready for publication.
5.
otherwise; or else: Be here on time, or we'll leave without you.
6.
Logic. the connective used in disjunction.

Origin:
1150–1200; Middle English, orig. the second, unstressed member of correlative other … or, earlier other … other, Old English āther … oththe, ā-hwæther … oththe, for oththe … oththe either … or; cf. ay1, whether


See and/or, either.
Dictionary.com Unabridged

or

2 [awr]
preposition, conjunction Chiefly Irish, Scot., and English.
before; ere.

Origin:
before 950; Middle English, Old English ār soon, early; cognate with Old Norse ār, Gothic air early; compare Old English ǣr soon, before, ere

or

3 [awr] Heraldry.
noun
1.
the tincture, or metal, gold: represented either by gold or by yellow.
adjective
2.
of the tincture, or metal, gold: a lion or.

Origin:
1400–50; late Middle English < Middle French < Latin aurum gold

OR

[awr]
noun
a Boolean operator that returns a positive result when either or both operands are positive.

Origin:
1940–45

OR

1.
Law. on (one's own) recognizance.
2.
operating room.
3.
operations research.
4.
Oregon (approved especially for use with zip code).
5.
owner's risk.

-or

1
a suffix occurring in loanwords from Latin, directly or through Anglo-French, usually denoting a condition or property of things or persons, sometimes corresponding to qualitative adjectives ending in -id4, (ardor; honor; horror; liquor; pallor; squalor; torpor; tremor ); a few other words that originally ended in different suffixes have been assimilated to this group (behavior; demeanor; glamour ).

Origin:
< Latin; in some cases continuing Middle English -our < Anglo-French, Old French < Latin -ōr-, stem of -or, earlier -os


While the -or spelling of the suffix -or1 is characteristic of American English, there are occasional exceptions, as in advertising copy, where spellings such as colour and favour seek to suggest the allure and exclusiveness of a product. The spelling glamour is somewhat more common than glamor—not actually an instance of -or1 , but conformed to it orthographically in the course of the word's history. In British English -our is still the spelling in most widespread use, -or being commonly retained when certain suffixes are added, as in coloration, honorary, honorific, laborious, odoriferous. The English of the Southern Hemisphere (Australia, New Zealand, South Africa) tends to mirror British practice, whereas Canadian English shares with the U.S. a preference for -or but with -our spellings as freely used variants.
The suffix -or2 is now spelled -or in all forms of English, with the exception of the word savior, often spelled saviour in the U.S. as well as in Britain, especially with reference to Jesus.

-or

2
a suffix forming animate or inanimate agent nouns, occurring originally in loanwords from Anglo-French (debtor; lessor; tailor; traitor ); it now functions in English as an orthographic variant of -er1, usually joined to bases of Latin origin, in imitation of borrowed Latin words containing the suffix -tor, (and its alternant -sor ). The association with Latinate vocabulary may impart a learned look to the resultant formations, which often denote machines or other less tangible entities which behave in an agentlike way: descriptor; plexor; projector; repressor; sensor; tractor .

Origin:
Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French -o(u)r < Latin -ōr-, stem of -or, extracted from -tōr -tor by construing the t as the ending of the past participle (hence Latin factor maker, equivalent to fac(ere) to make + -tor, was analyzed as fact(us), past participle of facere + -or); merged with Anglo-French, Old French -ëo(u)r < Latin -ātōr- -ator; cf. -eur

O.R.

owner's risk.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
or1 (ɔː, (unstressed) ə)
 
conj
1.  used to join alternatives: apples or pears; apples or pears or cheese; apples, pears, or cheese
2.  used to join rephrasings of the same thing: to serve in the army, or rather to fight in the army; twelve, or a dozen
3.  used to join two alternatives when the first is preceded by either or whether: whether it rains or not we'll be there; either yes or no
4.  one or two a few
5.  or else See else
6.  a poetic word for either or whether as the first element in correlatives, with or also preceding the second alternative
 
[C13: contraction of other, used to introduce an alternative, changed (through influence of either) from Old English oththe; compare Old High German odar (German oder)]

or2 (ɔː)
 
conj
1.  (subordinating; foll by ever or ere) before; when
 
prep
2.  before
 
[Old English ār soon; related to Old Norse ār early, Old High German ēr]

or3 (ɔː)
 
adj
(usually postpositive) heraldry of the metal gold
 
[C16: via French from Latin aurum gold]

OR
 
abbreviation for
1.  operations research
2.  Oregon
3.  military other ranks

-or1
 
suffix forming nouns
a person or thing that does what is expressed by the verb: actor; conductor; generator; sailor
 
[via Old French -eur, -eor, from Latin -or or -ātor]

-or2
 
suffix forming nouns
1.  indicating state, condition, or activity: terror; error
2.  the US spelling of -our

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

or
c.1200, from O.E. conj. oþþe "either, or," related to O.N. eða, O.H.G. odar, Ger. oder, Goth. aiþþau "or." This was extended in early M.E. with an -r ending, perhaps by analogy of other "choice between alternative" words that ended this way (either, whether), then reduced
to oþþr, at first in unstressed situations (commonly thus in Northern and Midlands Eng. by 1300), and finally reduced to or, though other survived in this sense until 16c. The contraction took place in the second term of an alternative, such as either ... or, a common construction in O.E., where both words originally were oþþe (see nor).

-or
suffix forming nouns of quality, state, or condition, from M.E. -our, from O.Fr. -our (Fr. -eur), from L. -orem (nom. -or), a suffix added to pp. verbal stems. Also in some cases from L. -atorem (nom. -ator). In U.S., via Noah Webster, -or is nearly universal (but not in
glamour, curious, generous), while in Britain -our is used in most cases (but with many exceptions: author, error, senator, ancestor, horror etc.). The -our form predominated after c.1300, but Mencken reports that the first three folios of Shakespeare's plays used both spellings indiscriminately and with equal frequency; only in the Fourth Folio of 1685 does -our become consistent. A partial revival of -or on the L. model took place from 16c. (governour began to lose its -u- 16c. and it was gone by 19c.), and also among phonetic spellers in both England and America (John Wesley wrote that -or was "a fashionable impropriety" in England in 1791). In the U.S., Noah Webster criticized the habit of deleting -u- in -our words in his first speller ("A Grammatical Institute of the English Language," commonly called the Blue-Black Speller) in 1783. His own deletion of the -u- began with the revision of 1804, and was enshrined in the influential "Comprehensive Dictionary of the English Language" (1806), which also established in the U.S. -ic for British -ick and -er for -re, along with many other attempts at reformed spelling which never caught on (e.g. masheen for machine). His attempt to justify them on the grounds of etymology and the custom of great writers does not hold up. Fowler notes the British drop the -u- when forming adjs. ending in -orous (humorous) and derivatives in -ation and -ize, in which cases the Latin origin is respected (e.g. vaporize). When the Americans began to consistently spell it one way, the British hardened their insistence on the other. "The American abolition of -our in such words as honour and favour has probably retarded rather than quickened English progress in the same direction." [Fowler]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

OR definition

logic
The Boolean function which is true if any of its arguments are true. Its truth table is:
A | B | A OR B --+---+--------- F | F | F F | T | T T | F | T T | T | T
(1996-11-04)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
or
Oriya
OR
  1. open reduction

  2. operating room

  3. operations research

  4. Oregon

  5. owner's risk

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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