adv 1 karibu, hivi punde ~ after baadaye kidogo, mara baada ya; hatimaye. 2 mapema, kabla ya how~? mapema kiasi gani she was there ten minutes too ~ alifika pale dakika kumi kabla ya wakati. 3 as/so ~as mara...po.. as ~ as she came mara alipofika, wakati uliotakiwa. no ~er than mara.. po.. mara moja; papo hapo. no ~er said than done fanyika mara moja. 4 (in double comparative constructions)the ~er the better mapema iwezekanavyo. ~er or later hapana budi, siku moja; ipo siku. 5 (suggesting comparison)(just)as ~ (as) sawa I would just as ~ walk as go by bus ni sawa kutembea au kwenda kwa basi. ~er than kulikoni ~er than cook he will skip his meal atasamehe mlo kulikoni kupika as ~ as not mara moja; kwa moyo mkunjufu I'd join the University as ~ as not nitapenda sana kujiunga na Chuo Kikuu.