Definition of well exclamation from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//wel//
    ; NAmE NAmE//wel//
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  1. 1  used to express surprise, anger or relief Well, well—I would never have guessed it! Well, really!What a thing to say! Well, thank goodness that's over!
  2. 2  used to show that you accept that something cannot be changed Well, it can't be helped. ‘We lost.’ ‘Oh, well. Better luck next time.’
  3. 3  used to agree to something, rather unwillingly Well, I suppose I could fit you in at 3.45. Oh, very well, then, if you insist.
  4. 4  used when continuing a conversation after a pause Well, as I was saying…
  5. 5  used to say that something is uncertain ‘Do you want to come?’ ‘Well, I'm not sure.’
  6. 6  used to show that you are waiting for somebody to say something Well? Are you going to tell us or not?
  7. 7  used to mark the end of a conversation Well, I'd better be going now.
  8. 8  used when you are pausing to consider your next words I think it happened, well, towards the end of last summer.
  9. 9used when you want to correct or change something that you have just said There were thousands of people there—well, hundreds, anyway.
  10. Word Originexclamation Old English wel(l), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch wel and German wohl; probably also to the modal verb will.Idioms (old-fashioned) used to express surprise (informal) I agree completely ‘We must stand up for ourselves.’ ‘Well said, John.’
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: well