Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of by-
Meaning of by- by Wiktionary Dictionary

by-


    Alternative forms

    • by-, bye-

    Etymology 1

    From Middle English by ( “town” ), of North Germanic origin, from Old Norse bȳr ( “dwelling, town” ), from Proto-Germanic *būwiz ( “dwelling” ), from Proto-Indo-European *bhōw- ( “to dwell” ). Cognate with Danish by ( “town” ). More at bower .

    Preposition

    by-

    1. ( usually non-productive ) Prefix originally denoting a town or city
      bylaw, bypass

    Etymology 2

    Partly from a combining form of by ( “by, near, around” ), and partly continuing Middle English bi-, by-, from Old English bī- ( “by, near, around” ), from Proto-Germanic *bi ( “near” ), from Proto-Indo-European *obhi, *ebhi ( “by” ) .

    Preposition

    by-

    1. Prefix denoting nearness
      bystander
    2. Prefix meaning secondary, incidental, or parallel to
      by-product, byform, by-path

    -by

    By Wiktionary ( 2011/11/25 13:09 UTC Version )

    Etymology

    From a Norse language


    by

    By Wiktionary ( 2012/08/12 02:58 UTC Version )

    Alternative forms

    Etymology

    From Old English bī ( “being near” ) .

    Pronunciation

    • ( UK, US ) IPA: /baɪ/, X-SAMPA: /baI/
    • Rhymes: -aɪ
    • Homophone: bi, bye, buy

    Preposition

    by

    1. Near or next to .
      The mailbox is by the bus stop .
    2. At some time before ( the given time ), or before the end of a given time interval .
      Be back by ten o'clock!
      We will send it by the first week of July .
    3. Indicates the actor in a clause with its verb in the passive voice Through the action or presence of .
      The matter was decided by the chairman .
      The boat was swamped by the water .
      He was protected by his body armour .
    4. Indicates the creator of a work Existing through the authorship etc of .
      There are many well-known plays by William Shakespeare
    5. Indicates the cause of a condition or event Through the action of, caused by, responsibility for; by dint of.
    6. Indicates a means Involving/using the means of .
      I avoided the guards by moving only when they weren't looking .
    7. Indicates a source of light ( medium emanating from hot sources )
      • 1945, Neva L. Boyd, Handbook of Recreational Games, 1975 Dover edition, ISBN 0486232042, page 16 [1]:
        Players: Can we get there by candlelight?
        Gatekeepers: Yes and back again .
      • 1960, Dr. Seuss, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish:
        By the light of the moon, / by the light of a star / they walked all night […]
    8. Indicates a rule followed Using the rules or logic of .
      I sorted the items by category .
    9. Indicates the amount of some progression With a change of .
      Our stock is up by ten percent .
    10. In the formulae X by X and by Xs, indicates a steady progression, one X after another .
      We went through the book page by page .
      We crawled forward by inches .
    11. Indicates a referenced source According to .
      He cheated by his own admission .
    12. Indicates an oath With the authority of .
      By Jove! I think she's got it!
      By all that is holy, I'll put an end to this .
    13. Used to separate dimensions when describing the size of something .
      It is easy to invert a 2 by 2 matrix .
      The room was about 4 foot by 6 foot .
      We used 10 by 20 by 30 cm bricks to build the wall."

    Adverb

    by ( not comparable )

    1. Along a path which runs by the speaker .
      I watched as it passed by .
    2. In the vicinity, near .
      There was a shepherd close by .
      The shop is hard by the High Street .
    3. To or at a place, as a residence or place of business .
      I'll stop by on my way home from work .
      We're right near the lifeguard station. Come by before you leave .
    4. Aside, away .
      The women spent much time after harvest putting jams by for winter and spring .

    Derived terms

    Adjective

    by ( not comparable )

    1. Out of the way, subsidiary .

    Antonyms

    Derived terms

    Noun

    by ( plural: bys )

    1. ( card games ) A pass

    Interjection

    by

    1. Alternative spelling of bye .

    Statistics

    • frequency based on Project Gutenberg corpus">Most common English words before 1923: not · be · at · #21: by · on · her · which