brief·ly | \ ˈbrē-flē \

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

At times, the four men briefly appear alongside the actors who portray them (respectively, Barry Keoghan, Evan Peters, Jared Abrahamson and Blake Jenner), lending the film an additional patina of surrealism. Michael O’sullivan, kansascity, "‘American Animals’: True crime that’s entertaining and profound," 21 June 2018 Six community members also took part: Elizabeth Fauerso, Suhail Arastu, Nissa Dunn, Mike De La Garza, Linda Chavez Thompson and Alice Viroslav, who briefly served as chairwoman of the symphony board and was the one who scrapped last season. Deborah Martin, San Antonio Express-News, "Task force releases strategic plan for the San Antonio Symphony," 19 June 2018 The birth — which appears briefly in a 1999 AHN hype reel — apparently went fine, and the network boasted that its site had gotten 10 million hits the day of the stream. Adi Robertson, The Verge, "Cybermom on the run: this week in tech, 20 years ago," 16 June 2018 Breed briefly served as acting mayor after Mayor Ed Lee died in December, but she was replaced in January by a San Francisco Board of Supervisors member, who served as acting mayor until the election. Anne Branigin, The Root, "It’s Official: London Breed 1st Black Woman Elected Mayor of San Francisco," 14 June 2018 Among the peculiarities of racing’s business model is that its biggest stars tend to be shooting stars, appearing only briefly before disappearing from public view and entering stud service. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Triple Crown winner Justify makes it look easy in Belmont victory," 9 June 2018 Correa, 26, appeared briefly in front of Judge Roland Fasano in Superior Court in Waterbury on a violation of probation warrant that was served on him in February after his arrest by Hartford police on drug charges. Dave Altimari,, "Griswold Murder Suspect Makes Brief Court Appearance on Other Charges," 8 June 2018 While candidate London Breed, who briefly served as acting mayor following Lee’s death, appeared to be leading Tuesday night, a clear winner has not yet emerged. Natasha Bach, Fortune, "San Francisco Still Doesn't Know Who Its New Mayor Is. But Whoever Wins Will Make History," 7 June 2018 James Candland is a small business owner who briefly served on the Council in 2016 when then-Mayor John Lewis stepped down and Jenn Daniels took his place. azcentral, "Election 2018: Here's who wants to run your Valley city," 1 June 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

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

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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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).


an open space surrounded by woods

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