Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈskɛəsli/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈskɛɹsli/
Audio (US) (file)
- Hyphenation: scarce‧ly
- (modal) Probably not.
- One could scarcely find any trout in the stream without the stocking program.
- (modal) Certainly not.
- One could scarcely expect the man to know how to fly a helicopter.
1842, William Godwin, An Enquiry Concerning Political Justice:
- He did not enter upon the subject without being aware that government by its very nature counteracts the improvement of individual intellect; but, as the views he entertains in this particular are out of the common road, it is scarcely to be wondered at that he understood the proposition more completely as he proceeded, and saw more distinctly into the nature of the remedy.
- 1914, Saki, Dusk in Beasts and Super-Beasts,
- His clothes could scarcely be called shabby, at least they passed muster in the half-light, but one’s imagination could not have pictured the wearer embarking on the purchase of a half-crown box of chocolates or laying out ninepence on a carnation buttonhole.
- (degree) Almost not at all; by a small margin.
- Washington Irving
- He had scarcely finished, when the labourer arrived who had been sent for my ransom.
- 1875 December 7, Ulysses S. Grant, Ulysses S. Grant's Seventh State of the Union Address,
- In 1776 manufactories scarcely existed even in name in all this vast territory.
- 1922, Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit
- That night, and for many nights after, the Velveteen Rabbit slept in the Boy’s bed. At first he found it rather uncomfortable, for the Boy hugged him very tight, and sometimes he rolled over on him, and sometimes he pushed him so far under the pillow that the Rabbit could scarcely breathe.
- 1963, Pierre Boulle, Planet of the Apes:
- But we shall take scarcely more than two years to reach it, while we should have needed almost as much time to arrive in the region of Proxima Centauris.
- 1993, Baltasar Gracián, Joseph Jacobs (translator), The Art of Worldly Wisdom,
- Nature scarcely ever gives us the very best—for that we must have recourse to art.
- Washington Irving
- Compare We scarcely ever eat fish. with We almost never eat fish.
- (degree: by a small margin): barely, hardly
- (barely, almost not or not quite): barely, just, hardly, only just
almost not, by a small margin
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.