The Meaning of Notwithstanding: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of notwithstanding? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word notwithstanding, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word notwithstanding mean?

According to Dictionary and Merriam-Webster Unabridged English Dictionary, the word notwithstanding (pronounced ˌnɒtwɪðˈstændɪŋ) can be used as a preposition to mean in spite of, a conjunction to mean in spite of or although, and an adverb meaning nevertheless. Try using this word of the day or other new words in a sentence today!

Many different languages also contain words that mean notwithstanding. It is very useful to know different translations for words if you are going to be traveling or communicating with someone who does not speak English. This list of translations is provided by Word Sense.

  • Malay: walau‎
  • Spanish: aunque‎, a pesar de‎
  • Esperanto: kvankam‎
  • Macedonian: иако‎ (iako), и покрај тоа‎
  • Greek: αν και‎
  • Hindi: अपी‎, हालाँकि‎, अगरचे‎
  • Bulgarian: макар че‎, въпреки че‎, при все че‎
  • Maori: ahakoa‎
  • Min Nan: 雖然‎, 虽然‎ (sui-jiân, sui-liân), 雖罔‎, 虽罔‎ (sui-bóng)
  • Irish: cé go‎
  • Korean: 하지만‎, 지만‎
  • Arabic: رَغْم أَنَّ‎ , مَعَ أَنَّ‎
  • Italian: sebbene‎, benché‎ (both always followed by the subjunctive)
  • Vietnamese: dẫu cho‎, mặc dù‎
  • Swedish: fastän‎, trots att‎, ehuru‎
  • Ancient: καίπερ‎
  • Danish: selvom‎, selv om‎, skønt‎
  • Catalan: tot i que‎, malgrat que‎, encara que‎
  • Swahili: ingawa‎
  • Belarusian: хоць‎, хаця́‎
  • Dutch: hoewel‎, alhoewel‎, ofschoon‎
  • Slovak: hoci‎, aj keď‎
  • Japanese: のに‎, だけれども‎
  • Hebrew: למרות ש־‎ (lamrót she-), אף על פי ש־‎ (af al pi she-)
  • Navajo: azhą́…ndi‎
  • Chichewa: ngakhale‎
  • Icelandic: þó að‎, enda þótt‎
  • French: bien que‎, quoique‎
  • Mandarin: 雖然‎, 虽然‎ (suīrán), 儘管‎, 尽管‎ (jǐnguǎn), (colloquial) 雖說‎, 虽说‎ (suīshuō)
  • Portuguese: embora‎, conquanto‎, apesar de‎
  • Javanese: senajan‎, sanadyan‎, masiya‎, puluh‎
  • Slovene: čeprav‎, četudi‎
  • Serbo-Croatian: iako‎, premda‎, mada‎, makar‎
  • Talysh: اگمچه‎ (agamcə) (Asalemi)
  • Latin: quamquam‎
  • Sorani: ئه‌گه‌رچی‎ (egerçi)
  • Romanian: deși‎, cu toate că‎
  • Ukrainian: хоча́‎, хоч‎
  • Bashkir: ҡарамаҫтан‎
  • Ido: quankam‎
  • French: malgré
  • Georgian: მიუხედავად იმისა, რომ‎
  • Polish: choć‎, chociaż‎, mimo że‎
  • Cantonese: 雖然‎, 虽然‎ (seoi1 jin4), 儘管‎, 尽管‎ (zeon6 gun2)
  • Yiddish: הגם‎ (hagam), כאָטש
  • Persian: اگرچه‎ (agarče)
  • Scots: awtho‎, altho‎
  • Czech: ač‎, ačkoliv‎
  • Thai: แม้‎, ถึงจะ‎, ทั้งที่‎, ถึงแม้‎, ทั้ง ๆ‎
  • Armenian: չնայած‎
  • Russian: хотя́‎, несмотря́ на то́, что‎, хоть и‎, хоть‎
  • German: obwohl‎, obschon‎ (poetical)
  • Norwegian Bokmål: selv om‎
  • Finnish: vaikka‎, joskin‎
  • Turkish: rağmen‎
  • Indonesian: walau‎, walaupun‎, meski‎, meskipun‎

What are synonyms and antonyms for the word notwithstanding?

There are numerous different words that someone can use in place of the word notwithstanding. These words are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same definition as another word or phrase. Synonyms are useful words to know if you want to avoid repeating yourself as well as if you are trying to expand your vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the word notwithstanding is provided by Thesaurus

  • even supposing
  • nonetheless
  • howbeit
  • without regard to
  • albeit
  • withal
  • still
  • much as
  • although
  • in spite of
  • per contra
  • at any rate
  • to the contrary
  • supposing
  • while
  • yet
  • after all
  • be that as it may
  • but
  • in any case
  • despite
  • though
  • however
  • all the same
  • on the other hand
  • whereas
  • even if
  • nevertheless
  • for all that
  • in any event
  • against
  • despite the fact
  • regardless of
  • granting all this
  • anyhow
  • granting
  • when
  • admitting

There are also numerous different words and phrases that have the opposite definition of the word notwithstanding. These are called antonyms, which are also a useful English language grammatical device to know if you are trying to expand your vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word notwithstanding is provided by Thesaurus.

  • by virtue of
  • by the agency of
  • as a result
  • in consequence of
  • for
  • in virtue of
  • at the hand of
  • with
  • via
  • with the help of
  • by dint of
  • using
  • by
  • as a consequence
  • by reason
  • per
  • through the medium of
  • through
  • by means of
  • because of

How can the word notwithstanding be used in a sentence?

The word notwithstanding can be used in many different ways as either a conjunction, adverb, or preposition. Below are a few different example sentences that show how the word notwithstanding can be used in these different ways.

As a preposition, one could say, “Notwithstanding his excellent grades and plethora of extracurriculars, Max was denied from every Ivy League school he applied to.”

As a conjunction, someone could say, “Marty was accepted to Harvard and Max was denied, notwithstanding their equally impressive extracurriculars, essays, test scores, and grade point averages.”

As an adverb, a person could say, “Max was excited to go to college notwithstanding being denied from his top choice schools.”

In all three of these examples, the word notwithstanding is used as a different part of speech. However, the same point is made in each example, 

What is the origin of the word notwithstanding?

According to Etymonline, the word notwithstanding is considered a negative present participle used as a quasi-preposition. This was originally two separate words in the late 14th century, from the word not and the present participle form of the verb withstand. This is called a loan translation of the Medieval Latin non obstante, meaning being no hindrance or not standing in the way. This comes from the ablative of the Latin obstans, which is the present participle of the Latin obstare meaning to stand opposite to. IT has been used as an adverb to mean nevertheless and a conjunction to mean in spite of the fact that since the early 15th century. Related words include obstacle, withstand, and others.

Overall, the word notwithstanding (pronounced ˌnɒtwɪθˈstændɪŋ) can be used as a preposition, adverb, or a conjunction to mean nevertheless or in spite of. This word is commonly used in the English language and is of Latin origin. 

Sources:

  1. https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/notwithstanding
  2. https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/because%20of
  3. https://www.wordsense.eu/notwithstanding/
  4. https://www.etymonline.com/word/notwithstanding
  5. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/notwithstanding
  6. https://www.dictionary.com/browse/notwithstanding