I. conjunction 1. used to connect words of the same part of speech, clauses, or sentences, that are to be taken jointly • bread and butter
• they can read and write
• a hundred and fifty.
2. used to connect two clauses when the second refers to something that happens after the first • he turned round and walked out.
3. used to connect two clauses, the second of which refers to something that results from the first • there was a flash flood and by the next morning the town was under water.
4. connecting two identical comparatives, to emphasize a progressive change • getting better and better.
5. connecting two identical words, implying great duration or great extent • I cried and cried.
6. used to connect two identical words to indicate that things of the same name or class have different qualities • all human conduct is determined or caused—but there are causes and causes.
7. used to connect two numbers to indicate that they are being added together • six and four makes ten.
‹archaic› used to connect two numbers, implying succession
• a line of men marching two and two.
9. used to introduce an additional comment or interjection • if it came to a choice—and this was the worst thing—she would turn her back on her parents.
10. used to introduce a question in connection with what someone else has just said • ‘I found the letter in her bag.’ ‘And did you steam it open?’.
11. used to introduce a statement about a new topic • and now to the dessert.
‹informal› used after some verbs and before another verb to indicate intention, instead of ‘to’
• I would try and do what he said.
II. noun 1. ( AND) —
[Electronics] a Boolean operator which gives the value one if and only if all the operands are one, and otherwise has a value of zero.
2. (also AND gate) — a circuit which produces an output signal only when signals are received simultaneously through all input connections. III. phrases and/or either or both of two stated possibilities • audio and/or video components.
– origin Old English and, ond, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch en and German und. / usage: 1 It is still widely taught and believed that conjunctions such as and (and also but and because) should not be used to start a sentence, the argument being that a sentence starting with and expresses an incomplete thought and is therefore incorrect. Writers down the centuries have readily ignored this advice, however, using and to start a sentence, typically for rhetorical effect, as in the following example: What are the government’s chances of winning in court? And what are the consequences? 2 A small number of verbs, notably try, come, and go can be followed by and with another verb, as in sentences like we’re going to try and explain it to them or why don’t you come and see the film? The structures in these verbs correspond to the use of the infinitive to, as in we’re going to try to explain it to them or why don’t you come to see the film? Since these structures are grammatically odd—for example, the use is normally only idiomatic with the infinitive of the verb and not with other forms (i.e. it is not possible to say I tried and explained it to them)—they are regarded as wrong by some traditionalists. However, these uses are extremely common and can certainly be regarded as part of standard English. 3 For information about whether it is more correct to say both the boys and the girls or both the boys and girls, see usage at both 4 Where items in a list are separated by and, the following verb needs to be in the plural: see usage at or1.