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



    Middle English yif, yef from Old English ġif .


    • IPA: /ɪf/, SAMPA: /If/
    • Rhymes: -ɪf



    1. Supposing that, assuming that, in the circumstances that; used to introduce a condition or choice .
      If it rains, I will get wet .
    2. Supposing that; used with past subjunctive indicating that the condition is not fulfilled .
      I'd prefer it if you took your shoes off .
    3. Although; used to introduce a concession .
      He was a great friend, if a little stingy at the bar .
    4. ( computing ) In the event that a statement is true ( a programming statement that acts in a similar manner ) .
      If A, then B, else C .
    5. ( proscribed ) Whether; used to introducing a noun clause as the object of certain verbs .
      I don't know if I want to go or not .

    Usage notes

    Derived terms

    Alternative form


    if ( plural: ifs )

    1. ( informal ) An uncertainty, possibility, condition, doubt etc.

    Derived terms

    See also


    frequency based on Project Gutenberg corpus">Most common English words: no « them « when « #51: if » there » more » out


Definition of if by GCIDE Dictionary


  1. Condition n. [F., fr. L. conditio ( better condicio ) agreement, compact, condition; con- + a root signifying to show, point out, akin to dicere to say, dicare to proclaim, dedicate. See Teach, Token.]
    1. Mode or state of being; state or situation with regard to external circumstances or influences, or to physical or mental integrity, health, strength, etc.; predicament; rank; position, estate.

    I am in my condition

    A prince, Miranda; I do think, a king. Shak.

    And O, what man's condition can be worse

    Than his whom plenty starves and blessings curse? Cowley.

    The new conditions of life. Darwin.

    2. Essential quality; property; attribute.

    It seemed to us a condition and property of divine powers and beings to be hidden and unseen to others. Bacon.

    3. Temperament; disposition; character. [Obs.]

    The condition of a saint and the complexion of a devil. Shak.

    4. That which must exist as the occasion or concomitant of something else; that which is requisite in order that something else should take effect; an essential qualification; stipulation; terms specified.

    I had as lief take her dowry with this condition, to be whipped at the high cross every morning. Shak.

    Many are apt to believe remission of sins, but they believe it without the condition of repentance. Jer. Taylor.

    5. ( Law ) A clause in a contract, or agreement, which has for its object to suspend, to defeat, or in some way to modify, the principal obligation; or, in case of a will, to suspend, revoke, or modify a devise or bequest. It is also the case of a future uncertain event, which may or may not happen, and on the occurrence or non-occurrence of which, the accomplishment, recission, or modification of an obligation or testamentary disposition is made to depend. Blount. Tomlins. Bouvier. Wharton.

    Equation of condition. ( Math. ) See under Equation. -- On condition or Upon condition ( that ), used for if in introducing conditional sentences. “Upon condition thou wilt swear to pay him tribute . . . thou shalt be placed as viceroy under him.” Shak. -- Conditions of sale, the terms on which it is proposed to sell property by auction; also, the instrument containing or expressing these terms.

    Syn. -- State; situation; circumstances; station; case; mode; plight; predicament; stipulation; qualification; requisite; article; provision; arrangement. See State.

  2. If conj. [OE. if, gif, AS. gif; akin to OFries. ief, gef, ef, OS. ef, of, D. of, or, whether, if, G. ob whether, if, OHG. oba, ibu, Icel. ef, Goth. iba, ibai, an interrogative particle; properly a case form of a noun meaning, doubt ( cf. OHG. iba doubt, condition, Icel. if, ef, ifi, efi ), and therefore orig. meaning, on condition that.]
    1. In case that; granting, allowing, or supposing that; -- introducing a condition or supposition.

    Tisiphone, that oft hast heard my prayer,

    Assist, if Œdipus deserve thy care. Pope.

    If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. Matt. iv. 3.

    2. Whether; -- in dependent questions.

    Uncertain if by augury or chance. Dryden.

    She doubts if two and two make four. Prior.

    As if, But if. See under As, But.