nearly
Pronunciation
  • (RP) IPA: /ˈnɪəli/
  • (America) IPA: /ˈnɪɹli/
  • (Scotland) IPA: /ˈniːɹli/

Adverb

nearly (comparative nearlier, superlative nearliest)

  1. (now, rare) With great scrutiny; carefully. [from 16th c.]
    • 1603, John Florio, translating Michel de Montaigne, Essays, III.1:
      And whosoever hath traced mee and nearely transterm looked into my humours, Ile loose a good wager if hee confesse not that there is no rule in their schoole, could, a midde such crooked pathes and divers windings, square and report this naturall motion, and maintaine an apparance of liberty and licence so equall and inflexible […].
  2. With close relation; intimately. [from 16th c.]
    • a. 1705, John Locke, “Of the Conduct of the Understanding”, in Posthumous Works of Mr. John Locke: […], London: […] A[wnsham] and J[ohn] Churchill, […], published 1706, OCLC 6963663 ↗:
      Let that which he learns next be nearly conjoined with what he knows already.
    • 1837, The Dublin University Magazine
      She could have joined most comfortably in all their supposings, and suspicions, and doubts, and prognostications, but the honour of the family was too nearly concerned to allow free reins to her tongue.
    • 1847, Herman Melville, Omoo
      [H]e was also accounted a man of wealth, and was nearly related to a high chief.
  3. Closely, in close proximity. [from 16th c.]
    • c. 1606, William Shakespeare, Macbeth, First Folio 1623, IV.2:
      I doubt some danger do's approach you neerely.
  4. In close approximation; almost, virtually. [from 17th c.]
    He left a nearly full beer on the bar.
    I nearly didn't go to work yesterday.
  5. Stingily.
Synonyms Translations


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