From Middle English or; partially contracted from other, auther, from Old English āþor, āwþer, āhwæþer ("some, any, either"; > either); and partially from Middle English oththe, from Old English oþþe, from Proto-Germanic *efþau (“or”).
- Connects at least two alternative words, phrases, clauses, sentences, etc. each of which could make a passage true. In English, this is the "inclusive or." The "exclusive or" is formed by "either […] or".
- (logic) An operator denoting the disjunction of two propositions or truth values. There are two forms, the inclusive or and the exclusive or.
- Counts the elements before and after as two possibilities.
- Otherwise (a consequence of the condition that the previous is false).
- Connects two equivalent names.
From Etymology 1 (sense 2 above)
or (countable and uncountable, plural ors)
- (heraldry) The gold or yellow tincture on a coat of arms.
or (not comparable)
- (heraldry) Of gold or yellow tincture on a coat of arms.
Late Old English ār, from Old Norse ár. Compare ere.
- (obsolete) Early (on).
- (obsolete) Earlier, previously.
- (now archaic or dialectal) Before; ere.