ostensibly

adverb
os·​ten·​si·​bly | \ ä-ˈsten(t)-sə-blē How to pronounce ostensibly (audio) \

Definition of ostensibly

1 : in an ostensible manner
2 : to all outward appearances

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of ostensibly in a Sentence

The god of cleanliness is never satisfied. In America, the ostensibly egalitarian nature of society meant that cleanliness was used to mark status. — Joanna Bourke, Harper's, April 2008 Budweiser and Miller, on the other hand, have eroded their credibility by launching brands ostensibly produced by microbreweries. They've been found out, with resulting customer cynicism. — James R. Rosenfield, Demographics, December 1997 The day after Clinton made his seemingly proactive statement, he met with congressional leaders of both parties, ostensibly to press the case for military intervention. — Michael Kelly, New Yorker, 19 Dec.1994 ostensibly a university student studying abroad, he was actually an espionage agent
See More
Recent Examples on the Web The money, which would be funneled through the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA), ostensibly aims to help organizations impacted by COVID-19. Todd Defeo, Washington Examiner, "Bipartisan group of New Jersey lawmakers wants $300M for small business grants," 12 Feb. 2021 The near-term outlook is mixed among some of Southeast’s biggest cruise port towns with the increasingly uncertain prospect of visitor revenue this year after ostensibly nothing in 2020. Elwood Brehmer, Anchorage Daily News, "Blame Canada: Alaska contends with cruise ban," 11 Feb. 2021 The Spurs left the AT&T Center after Tuesday’s 114-91 loss to Golden State and went home, ostensibly, to pack. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "Spurs hope they've learned from the Steph Curry clinic," 10 Feb. 2021 Many outlets that ostensibly count as national media—the Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg, among others—have published quality coverage of this. Nick Martin, The New Republic, "The Colorado River Crisis Is a National Crisis," 8 Feb. 2021 The service, ostensibly for gamers, has grown into an attractive tool for white nationalists. Jake Coyle, Star Tribune, "A theater of propaganda: The Capitol, cameras and selfies," 11 Jan. 2021 Wedemeyer’s move was intended, at least ostensibly, to reduce accidents on China’s roads, which were clogged by American jeeps and trucks. Thomas J. Campanella, WSJ, "The U.S. General Who Steered China Right," 30 Dec. 2020 However, pandemic fatigue also occurs for people who are ostensibly on board with societal attempts to control spread of the virus. David Badre, Scientific American, "How We Can Deal with 'Pandemic Fatigue'," 24 Jan. 2021 On Friday, Yang shared an odd video that is, ostensibly, a tribute of sorts to the staple New York institution. Lydia Wang, refinery29.com, "Why Is Everyone Talking About Bodegas Again?," 15 Jan. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ostensibly.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of ostensibly

1765, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ostensibly

see ostensible

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ostensibly

Time Traveler for ostensibly

Time Traveler

The first known use of ostensibly was in 1765

See more words from the same year

Statistics for ostensibly

Last Updated

21 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ostensibly.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ostensibly. Accessed 28 Feb. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

More from Merriam-Webster on ostensibly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ostensibly

Britannica English: Translation of ostensibly for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ostensibly

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!