di·​rect·​ly | \ də-ˈrek(t)-lē, dī-, in sense 2 especially də-ˈrek-lē or ˈdrek-lē\

Definition of directly

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : in a direct manner directly relevant the road runs directly east and west
b : in immediate physical contact
c : in the manner of direct variation
2a : without delay : immediately the second game followed directly after the first
b : in a little while : shortly we'll be leaving directly


di·​rect·​ly | \ də-ˈrek(t)-lē, dī-; ˈdrek-lē\

Definition of directly (Entry 2 of 2)

chiefly British
: immediately after : as soon as directly I received it I rang up the shipping company— F. W. Crofts

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Synonyms & Antonyms for directly

Synonyms: Adverb

dead, direct, due, plumb, plump, right, straight, straightway

Antonyms: Adverb


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Examples of directly in a Sentence


He refused to answer the question directly. She said that she wanted to speak to you directly. The package will be sent directly to your home. The two accidents are directly related. Thousands of people were directly affected by the disaster. Antonyms are words that are directly opposite in meaning. We parked directly behind the store. He sat directly across from me at the dinner table.


I came directly I received your message.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The 30-minute special, which is slated to air directly after the series premiere of Lindsay Lohan's Beach Club, documents the actress' adventures in Mykonos and introduces a cast of characters who work in her infamous nightclub. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Lindsay Lohan Just Had a 'Mean Girls' Reunion With Aaron Samuels," 4 Jan. 2019 Lezley McSpadden, the mother of Missouri’s late Michael Brown, who announced her 2019 run for Ferguson city council in August, directly addressed those concerns in an interview at the time. Lincoln Anthony Blades, Teen Vogue, "Stevante Clark is Running for Mayor of Sacramento," 3 Jan. 2019 These prototypes do not directly address harassment; other divisions at Twitter are at work on that problem. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Twitter tests new profile features, including presence indicators and ‘ice breakers’," 24 Oct. 2018 Now, in an interview with ABC’s Tom Llamas, Melania has addressed the infidelity allegations directly. Anna North, Vox, "Why Melania’s response to Trump’s alleged affairs was so weird," 12 Oct. 2018 New plants that suck carbon dioxide directly out of the air to recycle it or remove it from the atmosphere entirely came online this year. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Climate and energy news in 2018 actually wasn’t all bad," 1 Jan. 2019 Amazon’s efforts here face direct competition from Walmart Inc. and local startups, who are all trying to capture customers jumping directly to e-commerce thanks to the recent rollout of 4G mobile internet across India. Eric Bellman, WSJ, "Amazon, to Win in Booming Rural India, Reinvents Itself," 31 Dec. 2018 The strongest looks in the show were those that directly referenced the winter theme. Laird Borrelli-persson, Vogue, "Jean Paul Gaultier Embroiders With Snow," 30 Dec. 2018 The spacecraft beams two civilian signals to the planet, which gives the GPS III the ability to directly detect and correct errors caused by the ionosphere. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "USAF's Next-Gen GPS Satellites Will Be a Huge Upgrade...Eventually," 26 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'directly.' 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 directly


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1795, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for directly

Last Updated

19 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for directly

The first known use of directly was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for directly



English Language Learners Definition of directly

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in a direct way

: in a straight or direct line from a particular position

: without delay



English Language Learners Definition of directly (Entry 2 of 2)

: immediately after : as soon as


di·​rect·​ly | \ də-ˈrekt-lē, dī-\

Kids Definition of directly

1 : in a straight course or line She sits directly across from me. The road runs directly north.
2 : straight to or from a source : without interference I spoke directly to the principal.
3 : immediately sense 2 She began directly to work.

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More from Merriam-Webster on directly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for directly

Spanish Central: Translation of directly

Nglish: Translation of directly for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of directly for Arabic Speakers

Comments on directly

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