brief·​ly | \ ˈbrē-flē How to pronounce briefly (audio) \

Definition of briefly

1a : in a brief way briefly mentioned
b : in brief the food, briefly, was awful
2 : for a short time briefly married

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Examples of briefly in a Sentence

Several important issues are only briefly mentioned. Please briefly describe your experience. We briefly considered canceling the trip.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Husband asks politely to come in briefly, wife agrees, husband comes in, does what is needed. Carolyn Hax, Detroit Free Press, "Bathroom etiquette leads to disagreement," 4 June 2019 Electric chargers spin up nearly instantly and are used briefly during acceleration to create boost before a turbocharger has the time to spool. Jens Meiners, Car and Driver, "Volvo to Start Using Electrically Driven Superchargers," 17 May 2019 Filoni has also said that Ray Park will return to the franchise to perform motion-capture work as Darth Maul, the sith apprentice who seemed to die in 1999’s The Phantom Menace but unexpectedly appeared briefly via hologram in Solo. John Gilpatrick, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know About the Future of Star Wars," 10 May 2019 He was born in Boston, studied in the Bay Area and briefly dabbled in stand-up comedy before coming to his senses. Chris Barton,, "Kamasi Washington gets a festive homecoming at Arroyo Seco Weekend," 24 June 2018 He was detained briefly in February after Seyed-Emami’s death but released after an outcry from the public, Iranian reformists, and international media. Richard Stone, Science | AAAS, "An Iranian researcher went home to serve his country. Now, ‘I realize that I’m lucky I’m not in prison.’," 24 May 2018 Two cows briefly went rogue on Friday afternoon until officials were able to corral the pair into the parking lot of the Olathe District Activity Complex. Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "Will Irish farmers have to diaper their cows after Effin dung case? | The Kansas City Star," 23 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'briefly.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of briefly

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Dictionary Entries near briefly





brief of title



Statistics for briefly

Last Updated

9 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for briefly

The first known use of briefly was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for briefly



English Language Learners Definition of briefly

: in only a few words : in a brief way
: for a short period of time

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More from Merriam-Webster on briefly

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with briefly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for briefly

Spanish Central: Translation of briefly

Nglish: Translation of briefly for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of briefly for Arabic Speakers

Comments on briefly

What made you want to look up briefly? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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