wherefore

Even though you might think wherefore means "where," it really means the "why" behind something.

You're most likely to see wherefore in an old book, as it's not used often today. Occasionally writers still use the phrase "the whys and wherefores," to mean all of the underlying causes of something. Possibly the most famous use of the word is in "Romeo and Juliet," when Juliet says, "Wherefore art thou Romeo?" She doesn't mean "where are you?" but "why are you Romeo," or "why do you have to be a Montague, enemy of my family?"

Definitions of wherefore
  1. noun
    the cause or intention underlying an action or situation, especially in the phrase `the whys and wherefores'
    synonyms: why
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    type of:
    ground, reason
    a rational motive for a belief or action
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