This is a part of a dialogue between two characters that I was reading in my book:

Mr Lamb: You could tell me your name. If you chose. And not, if you didn't.

Derry: Derry. Only it's Derek.... but I hate that. Derry. If I am your friend, you don't have to be mine. I choose that.

What does the word "only" mean in this context? And the second thing I want to ask is why Derry retells his name (the highlighted part)?

1 Answer 1


In context, only means actually or however.

Derry is telling Mr. Lamb that his real name is Derek, but that he prefers to be called Derry. His repetition of the name, "Derry", is to reiterate his preference.

See also only, specifically the definition where only is used a conjunction.

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