Definition for SO

SO, adv. [Goth. swa; Sax. swa; G. so; D. zo; Dan. saa; Sw. ; perhaps L. sic, contracted, or Heb. שוה, to compose, to set. In Ir. so is this or that. It is the same in Scots. It is from some root signifying to set, to still, and this sense is retained in the use of the word by milkmaids, who say to cows, so, so, that is, stand still, remain as you are; and in this use, the word may be the original verb.]

  1. In like manner, answering to as, and noting comparison or resemblance; as with the people, so with the priest.
  2. In such a degree; to that degree. Why is his chariot so long in coming? – Judges v.
  3. In such a manner; sometimes repeated so and so; as, certain colors, mingled so and so. – Suckling.
  4. It is followed by as. There is something equivalent in France and Scotland; so as it is a hard calumny upon our soil to affirm that so excellent a fruit will not grow here. – Temple. But in like phrases, we now use that; “so that it is a hard calumny;” and this may be considered as the established usage.
  5. In the same manner. Use your tutor with great respect, and cause all your family to do so too. – Locke.
  6. Thus; in this manner; as, New York so called from the Duke of York. I know not why it is, but so it is. It concerns every man, with the greatest seriousness, to inquire whether these things are so or not. – Tillotson.
  7. Therefore; thus; for this reason; in consequence of this or that. It leaves instruction, and so instructors, to the sobriety of the settled articles of the church. – Holyday. God makes him in his own image an intellectual creature, and so capable of dominion. – Locke. This statute made the clipping of coin high treason, which it was not at common law; so that this was an enlarging statute. – Blackstone.
  8. On these terms, noting a conditional petition. Here then exchange we mutually forgiveness; / So may the guilt of all my broken vows, / My perjuries to thee be all forgotten. – Rowe. So here might be expressed by thus, that is, in this manner, by this mutual forgiveness.
  9. Provided that; on condition that. [L. modo.] So the doctrine be but wholesome and edifying … though there should be a want of exactness in the manner of speaking and reasoning, it may he overlooked. – Atterbury. I care not who furnishes the means, so they are furnished. – Anon.
  10. In like manner, noting the concession of one proposition or fact and the assumption of another; answering to as. As a war should be undertaken upon a just motive, so a prince ought to consider the condition he is in when he enters on it. – Swift.
  11. So often expresses the sense of a word or sentence going before. In this case it prevents a repetition, and may be considered as a substitute for the word or phrase. “France is highly cultivated, but England is more so,” that is, more highly cultivated. – Arthur Young. To make men happy, and to keep them so. – Creech.
  12. Thus; thus it is; this is the state. How sorrow shakes him! / So now the tempest tears him up by th' roots. – Dryden.
  13. Well; the fact being such. And so the work is done, is it?
  14. It is sometimes used to express a certain degree, implying comparison, and yet without the corresponding word as, to render the degree definite. An astringent is not quite so proper, where relaxing the urinary passages is necessary. – Arbuthnot. That is, not perfectly proper, or not so proper as something else not specified.
  15. It is sometimes equivalent to be it so, let it be so, let it be as it is, or in that manner. There is Percy; if your father will do me any honor, so; if not, let him kill the next Percy himself. – Shak.
  16. It expresses a wish, desire or petition. Ready are the appellant and defendant … / So please your highness to behold the fight. – Shak.
  17. So much as, however much. Instead of so, we now generally use as; as much as, that much; whatever the quantity may be.
  18. So so, or so repeated, used as a kind of exclamation; equivalent to well, well; or it is so, the thing is done. So, so, it works; now, mistress, sit you fast. – Dryden.
  19. So so, much as it was; indifferently; not well nor much amiss. His leg is but so so. – Shak.
  20. So then, thus then it is; therefore; the consequence is. So then the Volscians stand; but as at first / Ready, when time shall prompt them, to make road / Upon's again. – Shak.

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