fairly

fairly
[[t]fe͟ə(r)li[/t]]
♦♦♦
1) ADV: ADV adj/adv Fairly means to quite a large degree. For example, if you say that something is fairly old, you mean that it is old but not very old.

Both ships are fairly new (five years old and one year old respectively)...

We did fairly well but only fairly well.

Syn:
2) ADV: ADV adj/adv (vagueness) You use fairly instead of `very' to add emphasis to an adjective or adverb without making it sound too forceful.

Were you always fairly bright at school?...

You've got to be fairly single-minded about it...

I'll have no income and no home and will need a job fairly badly.

Syn:
3) ADV: ADV before v (emphasis) Fairly is used to emphasize that something happens to a very great degree or extent.

He fairly flew across the room...

For him, the place is fairly boiling with humanity...

Syn:
4) ADV-GRADED: ADV before v You use fairly to suggest that a statement is probably or possibly true, and therefore deserves to be accepted or considered.

It can no doubt be fairly argued that Sir John, whose pay is linked to performance, is entitled to every penny...

After I had read the book I could fairly claim to be an expert.

Syn:
justifiably
5) See also fair

English dictionary. 2008.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Fairly — Fair ly, adv. 1. In a fair manner; clearly; openly; plainly; fully; distinctly; frankly. [1913 Webster] Even the nature of Mr. Dimmesdale s disease had never fairly been revealed to him. Hawthorne. [1913 Webster] 2. Favorably; auspiciously;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • fairly — [fer′lē] adv. [ME: see FAIR1 & LY2] 1. justly; equitably 2. moderately; somewhat [fairly hot] 3. clearly; distinctly 4. virtually; in effect …   English World dictionary

  • fairly — I (clearly) adverb absolutely, aperte, certainly, dare, completely, conspicuously, decidedly, decisively, definitely, discernibly, distincte, distinctively, distinctly, distinguishably, doubtlessly, evidently, explicitly, fully, indubitably,… …   Law dictionary

  • fairly — [adv1] somewhat adequately, averagely, enough, kind of, moderately, more or less, passably, pretty well, quite, rather, ratherish, reasonably, some, something, sort of, so so*, tolerably; concept 786 fairly [adv2] justly deservedly, equitably,… …   New thesaurus

  • fairly — (adv.) c.1400, handsomely, from FAIR (Cf. fair) + LY (Cf. ly) (2). Meaning impartially is from 1670s; somewhat is from 1805; meaning totally is earlier (1590s) …   Etymology dictionary

  • fairly — ► ADVERB 1) with justice. 2) moderately. 3) actually; positively …   English terms dictionary

  • fairly — adverb Date: 12th century 1. in a handsome manner < a table fairly set > 2. obsolete a. in a gentle manner ; quietly b. in a courteous manner 3. so to speak ; nearly, practically …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • fairly — fair, fairly adverbs. Fair is used in its ordinary meaning ‘in a fair manner’ in several fixed expressions, e.g. to bid fair, to play fair, fair between the eyes. In dialect use and in some non British varieties it is used to mean ‘completely,… …   Modern English usage

  • fairly — /fair lee/, adv. 1. in a fair manner; justly or honestly; impartially. 2. moderately; tolerably: a fairly heavy rain. 3. properly; legitimately: a claim fairly made. 4. clearly; distinctly: fairly seen. 5. Chiefly Southern U.S. a. actually;… …   Universalium

  • fairly — fair|ly W2S1 [ˈfeəli US ˈferli] adv 1.) [+ adjective/adverb] more than a little, but much less than very →↑quite ▪ The house had a fairly large garden. ▪ She speaks English fairly well. ▪ The instructions seem fairly straightforward. see usage… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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