: in an idle manner: such as
: without much thought, effort or attention
- idly staring out the window
- idly flipping from one channel to another
- Harry …doodled idly on his parchment ignoring Hermione's frequent glares and nudges …
- —J. K. Rowling
: in a lazy or inactive manner or state
- sat with her hands resting idly in her lap
- spent the day lying idly on the couch
- Barber left London the next day, and for six months sat idly in Addis Ababa waiting for something to happen.
- —Waverly Root
: without taking any action
- "The time has come to speak," she said. "I cannot stand idly by [=do nothing] and see a young man going to perdition!"
- —P. G. Wodehouse
- … a party who has been wronged by a breach of contract may not unreasonably sit idly by and allow damages to accumulate.
- —John D. Calamari and Joseph M. Perillo