while /ˈhwaɪ(ə)l, ˈwaɪ(ə)l/
1. Space of time, or continued duration, esp. when short; a time; as, one while we thought him innocent. “All this while.”
This mighty queen may no while endure. --Chaucer.
[Some guest that] hath outside his welcome while,
And tells the jest without the smile. --Coleridge.
I will go forth and breathe the air a while. --Longfellow.
2. That which requires time; labor; pains. [Obs.]
Satan . . . cast him how he might quite her while. --Chaucer.
At whiles, at times; at intervals.
And so on us at whiles it falls, to claim
Powers that we dread. --J. H. Newman.
-- The while, The whiles, in or during the time that; meantime; while. --Tennyson.
Within a while, in a short time; soon.
Worth while, worth the time which it requires; worth the time and pains; hence, worth the expense; as, it is not always worth while for a man to prosecute for small debts.
While, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Whiled p. pr. & vb. n. Whiling.] To cause to pass away pleasantly or without irksomeness or disgust; to spend or pass; -- usually followed by away.
The lovely lady whiled the hours away. --Longfellow.
1. During the time that; as long as; whilst; at the same time that; as, while I write, you sleep. “While I have time and space.”
Use your memory; you will sensibly experience a gradual improvement, while you take care not to overload it. --I. Watts.
2. Hence, under which circumstances; in which case; though; whereas.
While as, While that, during or at the time that. [Obs.]
While, v. i. To loiter. [R.]
While, prep. Until; till. [Obs. or Prov. Eng. & Scot.]
I may be conveyed into your chamber;
I'll lie under your bed while midnight. --Beau. & Fl.
n : a period of indeterminate length (usually short) marked by
some action or condition; "he was here for a little
while"; "I need to rest for a piece"; "a spell of good
weather"; "a patch of bad weather" [syn: piece, spell,