What does only if mean?

Definitions for only if
on·ly if

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word only if.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. only, only if, only whenadverb

    never except when

    "call me only if your cold gets worse"


  1. only ifconjunction

    Not unless; used to introduce a necessary condition.


  1. only if

    "Only if" is a conditional phrase in logical statements often used in math, philosophy or computer science which means that a certain proposition or situation is true solely under the specific circumstances that follow "only if". In simpler terms, "A happens only if B happens" means B is a necessary condition for A to occur. If B doesn't happen, then A won't either. It also implies that whenever A happens, B must have happened.

How to pronounce only if?

How to say only if in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of only if in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of only if in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of only if in a Sentence

  1. Bill McKibben:

    The only bright point is that, as the study authors say, they haven't factored in the plummeting cost of solar power, that's the one way out we still might take -- but only if our governments take full advantage of the breakthroughs our engineers have produced.

  2. Claudia Lopes:

    Mass media influences behaviors through a coordination effect. I.e., people want to participate only if the others also participate. Improving knowledge of attitudes is only effective in changing behavior if individuals perceive that others will change with them.

  3. Mustafa Barghouti:

    The most important factor is to call for elections, give people the right to choose their leaders, give the younger generation the opportunity to be represented in the system and to have their opinion heard, at this time, [ the youth ] come to only one conclusion, they will hear you only if you use guns. And that is, of course, a dangerous situation for which not only The Palestinian Authority is responsible, but mainly it is Israel that is responsible for creating this situation.

  4. Frederick Buechner:

    The grace of God means something like Here is your life. You might never have been, but you are because the party wouldn't have been complete without you. Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid. I am with you. Nothing can ever separate us. It's for you I created the universe. I love you. There's only one catch. Like any other gift, the gift of grace can be yours only if you'll reach out and take it. Maybe being able to reach out and take it is a gift too.

  5. Francis Cardinal George, OMI:

    The devil is the source of temptation, but succumbing to temptation is our own doing. Only if we come face to face with our own sinfulness, do we begin to be grateful for the power of God’s forgiveness. Only if we recognize the connection between sin and death, do we begin to probe the meaning of Christ’s death and resurrection. Only if we experience the evil we have done, do we begin to understand how God has brought redemption out of loss, love out of hatred.


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"only if." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 26 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/only+if>.

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    a symptom of reduced quality or strength
    • A. scrutiny
    • B. deterioration
    • C. plantation
    • D. purse

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