orig·​i·​nal·​ly ə-ˈri-jə-nᵊl-ē How to pronounce originally (audio)
archaic : by origin or derivation : inherently
: in the beginning : in the first place : initially
: in a fresh or original manner

Example Sentences

That van originally belonged to us. The building was originally a school. They originally planned to fix their old car, but they decided to buy a new one instead. Originally, the word had a very different meaning from its current meaning. a New Yorker who is originally from Mexico She has shown an ability to think originally about ways to improve the company. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Britney was originally placed under the conservatorship in 2008 following a public mental health crisis. Kirsty Hatcher, Peoplemag, 26 May 2023 The museum building was formerly Flagg Grove School, which was originally built in 1889 to educate the area’s black children. Justin Ray, Robb Report, 25 May 2023 Steven Hirsch / Pool/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images The trial was originally scheduled for November 2023, but the case was delayed when Bannon had to switch lawyers. Graham Kates, CBS News, 25 May 2023 The website that originally made the claim used numbers from an unverified database that allows anyone to submit reports of adverse vaccine side effects. Chris Mueller, USA TODAY, 25 May 2023 The Powerball ticket was originally a $50,000 win, but since this player multiplied their winnings with Power Play, the final winnings became $200,000 after the Monday night drawing. Ellie Willard, The Arizona Republic, 23 May 2023 The password-sharing crackdown was originally supposed to hit the US at the beginning of this year, but the company pushed that launch back again in April. Jay Peters, The Verge, 23 May 2023 Both characters take turns—separately and together—re-creating iconic musical numbers originally performed by famous Italian singers Raffaella Carrà and Patty Pravo. Bianca Betancourt, Harper's BAZAAR, 18 May 2023 Finally, join the Newport elite with a stay at The Vanderbilt, Auberge Resorts Collection, a hotel originally built for Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt himself. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, 17 May 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of originally was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near originally

Cite this Entry

“Originally.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/originally. Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


orig·​i·​nal·​ly ə-ˈrij-ən-ᵊl-ē How to pronounce originally (audio)
: in the beginning : in the first place
: in an original manner

More from Merriam-Webster on originally

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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