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Etymology 1[edit]

From under +‎ -ly.


underly ‎(comparative more underly, superlative most underly)

  1. (dialectal) Poor; inferior.

Etymology 2[edit]

Back-formation from underlying.


underly ‎(third-person singular simple present underlies, present participle underlying, simple past underlay, past participle underlain)

  1. Alternative spelling of underlie
    • 1967, R. D. Laing, The Politics of Experience and the Bird of Paradise
      I asked him what principles he felt should underly the care provided during such a voyage.
Related terms[edit]