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in·​stant·​ly ˈin(t)-stənt-lē How to pronounce instantly (audio)
: without the least delay : immediately
: with importunity : urgently


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: as soon as
he ran across the grass instantly he perceived his motherW. M. Thackeray

Examples of instantly in a Sentence

Adverb His voice is instantly recognizable. They instantly fell in love. She was killed instantly when her car hit a tree. Conjunction we realized there would be problems instantly we saw the final report
Recent Examples on the Web
The lip oil will instantly moisturize your lips and give you a gentle hint of color. Mia Meltzer, Rolling Stone, 16 Feb. 2024 Wouldn’t a human doctor in this setting be instantly all over the AI? Lance Eliot, Forbes, 16 Feb. 2024 Our cat instantly fawned over the Yeowww banana toy and began bunny-kicking away at it to his heart’s content. Cai Cramer, Peoplemag, 16 Feb. 2024 Swift, who has become an honorary member of the Chiefs Nation thanks to her relationship with the team’s star tight end Travis Kelce, instantly met and then exceeded the original $75,000 goal of the page set up to care for the family of the beloved 44-year-old married mother of two. Gil Kaufman, Billboard, 16 Feb. 2024 And best of all, each piece is stylish enough to be worn a myriad of different ways, instantly diversifying my suitcase picks. Merrell Readman, Travel + Leisure, 16 Feb. 2024 The second machine slammed into the front of Parker’s team, killing two dogs instantly and critically injuring two others. Mark Thiessen, Fortune, 15 Feb. 2024 Gerstein painted the base of Lively's nails in the shade and then transitioned to the giraffe print French manicure, dotting the tips of Lively's nails with those instantly recognizable blobs of color like a giraffe's hide. Kara Nesvig, Allure, 14 Feb. 2024 The crowd burst into applause when Stevie Wonder, who also appeared on the original song, played his instantly recognizable harmonica solo. Melinda Newman, Billboard, 4 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'instantly.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Middle English, from instant instant entry 2 + -ly -ly entry 2


derivative of instantly entry 1

First Known Use


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2


1793, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of instantly was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near instantly

Cite this Entry

“Instantly.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


: without delay : immediately
came instantly when I called

More from Merriam-Webster on instantly

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