fair·​ly | \ ˈfer-lē \

Definition of fairly

1 : in a handsome manner a table fairly set

2 obsolete

a : in a gentle manner : quietly
b : in a courteous manner
3 : so to speak : nearly, practically fairly bursting with pride
4a : in a proper or legal manner fairly priced stocks
b : without bias or distortion : impartially a story told fairly and objectively
5 : to a full degree or extent : plainly, distinctly had fairly caught sight of him
6 : rather sense 5, moderately a fairly easy job

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Examples of fairly in a Sentence

It's a fairly common disease. I told the story as fairly as possible. He reports fairly on the issues. He beat me fairly and squarely.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The British prince husband might also take a fairly high spot on the list. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Kate Middleton's Chic Lace Up Ankle Boots From LK Bennett Are On Sale," 5 Feb. 2019 Research on the keto diet in healthy populations is fairly limited and still developing. Karla Walsh, Woman's Day, "What Is the Keto Diet, Exactly?," 27 Dec. 2018 So, the data is still fairly limited, and these results give only a very small window into the world of whale stress. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Whales are stressed out by climate change, and it shows in their earwax," 16 Nov. 2018 Justice demands that both Dr. Blasey Ford and her story be treated fairly, impartially, and with respect. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "1,600 Men Show Their Support for Christine Blasey Ford in Full-Page New York Times Ad," 26 Sep. 2018 While the predictability of the path of the storm is fairly high over the next 72 hours, beyond that time frame, there are just too many mitigating factors that will affect the storms ultimate destination. Greg Porter, Washington Post, "Maria explodes into super typhoon in the western Pacific and may hit China next week," 6 July 2018 Brown and green mix The impact of these conditions on wildlife so far has been fairly limited and isolated. Shannon Tompkins, Houston Chronicle, "Texas’ deer population would welcome good soaking," 16 June 2018 The Panthers used fairly high draft picks on Daeshon Hall (third round, 2017) and Marquis Haynes (fourth round, 2018), while Bryan Cox Jr. flashed potential at times last season as an undrafted free agent. Joseph Person, charlotteobserver, "Minicamp is over, but 4 big Panthers position battles must be settled in Spartanburg," 15 June 2018 The physical symptoms were fairly common and easy to see. Annabelle Dunne, Vogue, "I Took 30 Days Off From My Job, Family, and Cell Phone—Here’s What Happened," 17 June 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for fairly

Last Updated

17 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fairly

The first known use of fairly was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for fairly



English Language Learners Definition of fairly

: to some degree or extent but not very or extremely : to a reasonable or moderate extent
: in a way that is right or proper : in a fair way
used for emphasis before a verb that is being used figuratively


fair·​ly | \ ˈfer-lē \

Kids Definition of fairly

1 : in a just and proper manner I was treated fairly.
2 : very close to He was fairly bursting with pride.
3 : for the most part : rather It's a fairly easy job.

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More from Merriam-Webster on fairly

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fairly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fairly

Spanish Central: Translation of fairly

Nglish: Translation of fairly for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fairly for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fairly

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


a servile follower or underling

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