- Otherwise is defined as in other circumstances, other ways or other respects, or can mean "or else."
- If a person is normally nice but is rude only on one particular occasion, this is an example of when you might say he is otherwise very nice except for that occasion.
- If a dog has all brown fur but one white paw, this is an example of when you might say that he is an otherwise brown dog.
- If you are known as Joe but also known as Joseph, this is an example of when you might introduce yourself as Joe, otherwise known as Joseph.
- If the only reason you do not eat nuts is because you are allergic, this is an example of when you might say that you are allergic, otherwise you'd eat them.
otherwise definition by Webster's New World
- in another manner; differently: to believe otherwise
- in all other points or respects: an otherwise intelligent person
- in other circumstances
- if not: used as a conjunctive adverb: do it right; otherwise, you'll have to do it over
Origin: Middle English othre wise ; from Old English on othre wisan: see wise
otherwise definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- In another way; differently: She thought otherwise.
- Under other circumstances: Otherwise I might have helped.
- In other respects: an otherwise logical mind.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English (on) ōthere wīsan, (in) another manner : ōthre, dative of ōther, other + wīsan, dative of wīse, manner; see wise2.