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

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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
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Recent Examples on the Web

The trio gained widespread recognition, and more than 14,000 donors contributed through GoFundMe, ostensibly to help Bobbitt. David Porter, The Seattle Times, "Homeless ‘good Samaritan’ gets probation in gas money scam," 12 Apr. 2019 She and her boyfriend, Paul Erickson, a top Republican operative with connections to the NRA who tried to broker a meeting between Trump and Vladimir Putin in May 2016, created an LLC, ostensibly to pay Butina’s education bills. Alex Finley - Center For Public Integrity, Vox, "How Russian money and influence slipped through cracks in the US legal system," 25 Oct. 2018 Egypt and Israel sent professionals to newly independent states, ostensibly to gain their support on the conflict’s debate within the United Nations. Gerasimos Tsourapas, Washington Post, "How authoritarian regimes use migration to exert ‘soft power’ in foreign policy," 6 July 2018 Jesus Busso-Estopellan, 28, who had prior drug convictions, is believed to have lured Olek Wladyszewski, 19, to Mesa on June 29, 2011, ostensibly to sell him pills. Michael Kiefer, azcentral, "Hung jury prompts mistrial in death-penalty phase of double murderer who killed teens," 2 May 2018 The Courant reviewed several case reports in which children were withdrawn into dysfunctional households, ostensibly to be home-schooled. Josh Kovner, courant.com, "Hundreds Of Connecticut Children Home Schooled In Households Where Abuse, Neglect Suspected," 26 Apr. 2018 In November, the Saudi government detained approximately 200 government officials, businesspeople and royal family members, ostensibly to investigate allegations of widespread corruption. Nicole Gaouette And Laura Koran, CNN, "US rights report lashes Russia but neglects women's issues," 20 Apr. 2018 The parking lot was bordered with a black iron fence ostensibly to keep out crime. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "The Nighthawks of the Giant," 16 Apr. 2018 As a political matter, the plan is indefensible; and yet, Trump is ostensibly putting it forward purely for politics’ sake. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump Adds ‘Cutting Children’s Health Care’ to GOP’s 2018 Platform," 9 May 2018

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.

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First Known Use of ostensibly

1765, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ostensibly

see ostensible

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Statistics for ostensibly

Last Updated

1 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ostensibly

The first known use of ostensibly was in 1765

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More from Merriam-Webster on ostensibly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ostensibly

Britannica English: Translation of ostensibly for Arabic Speakers

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