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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Synonyms & Antonyms for fairly


clean, cleanly, fair, legally


dirty, illegally

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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

Cyclospora is a fairly unusual parasite and it’s not easily removed by washing produce. Maggie Fox /, NBC News, "61 sick in parasite outbreak linked to McDonald's salads," 14 July 2018 The chances of them going to trial are fairly slim. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "Could Gareon Conley Legally Prove That Rape Allegation Caused Draft Slide, Financial Harm?," 12 July 2018 While sales growth of iPads has slowed in recent years, the Mac line has remained fairly steady. Mark Gurman / Bloomberg, Time, "Apple Just Quietly Launched a Brand New MacBook Pro Laptop Lineup," 12 July 2018 After that, though, the Stelvio is a fairly pleasant partner, although the occasional lurch caught me off guard. Scott Sturgis, Philly.com, "2018 Stelvio rounds out the Alfa Romeo lineup," 12 July 2018 So far, the trade war between the U.S. and China has been fairly abstract to most people. latimes.com, "Today: The Tussles in Brussels," 12 July 2018 The process is fairly efficient; about 60% of the energy put into the plant ends up being stored in the ammonia's bonds. Scaled up to factories the size of Yara's, the process can produce vast amounts of ammonia. Robert F. Service, Science | AAAS, "Ammonia—a renewable fuel made from sun, air, and water—could power the globe without carbon," 12 July 2018 And the United States is being treated much more fairly. Washington Post, "AP FACT CHECK: Trump falsely claims credit on NATO spending," 12 July 2018 But internal migration, too, is at fairly low levels. Lyman Stone, Vox, "The myth of the job-hopping, rootless millennial is just that — a myth," 11 July 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

1 Sep 2018

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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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).


the setting in which something occurs

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