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near +‎ -ly


  • (file)


nearly (comparative nearlier or more nearly, superlative nearliest or most nearly)

  1. Almost, but not quite; slightly short of.
    He left a nearly full beer on the bar.
    I nearly didn't put this example in.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 1, A Cuckoo in the Nest[1]:
      She was like a Beardsley Salome, he had said. And indeed she had the narrow eyes and the high cheekbone of that creature, and as nearly the sinuosity as is compatible with human symmetry.
    • 2013 May-June, Kevin Heng, “Why Does Nature Form Exoplanets Easily?”, American Scientist, volume 101, number 3, page 184: 
      In the past two years, NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope has located nearly 3,000 exoplanet candidates ranging from sub-Earth-sized minions to gas giants that dwarf our own Jupiter.
  2. Intimately; closely.
    • John Locke (1632-1705)
      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.