port·​ly | \ ˈpȯrt-lē How to pronounce portly (audio) \
portlier; portliest

Definition of portly

2 : heavy or rotund of body : stout

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Other Words from portly

portliness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for portly



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Examples of portly in a Sentence

a portly gentleman who clearly didn't get enough exercise walked with the portly grace of the grande dame that she was
Recent Examples on the Web Vasquez, the portly man whose cries of exaltation at a double rainbow turned him into a viral star, died at 57 on Saturday. Scottie Andrew, CNN, "'Double Rainbow Guy' Paul Vasquez has died," 11 May 2020 In January, 2003, in the body of a portly seafood merchant suffering a respiratory crisis, the virus reached a Guangzhou hospital. David Quammen, The New Yorker, "Why Weren’t We Ready for the Coronavirus?," 4 May 2020 The portly 36-year-old is a heavy smoker with a penchant for excess. David Pierson, Los Angeles Times, "Rumors of North Korean leader’s ill health often abound — but facts don’t," 21 Apr. 2020 During the modeling phase, family members asked Cleveland artist William T. Moore III to add more girth to the portly figure. Jeff Suess, Cincinnati.com, "President statues tell our story," 16 Feb. 2020 The portly pitcher possesses some medical red flags. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "Spring training will offer a welcome diversion after the Red Sox’ offseason of discontent," 9 Feb. 2020 The master of this art is the eider duck, a portly sea duck that is widespread in the Arctic and feeds by diving for mussels in frigid polar water. Helen Czerski, WSJ, "Eiderdown Is Nature’s Perfect Duvet," 6 Feb. 2020 Spicer's constant smile was back on full-grit for the dance and the show's portly engine-that-could pulled off some effective moves that resembled ballroom dancing. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "'Dancing With the Stars' recap: Disney Night brings princess tears, Hannah Brown as Jasmine," 1 Oct. 2019 Another piece of the heavyweight crown will be at stake when the portly Ruiz tries to replicate his upset win over a British fighter who staked a claim as the best of the lot until Ruiz stopped him in June in New York. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "Deontay Wilder vs. Luis Ortiz fight (11/23/19) time, channel, live stream; how to watch online," 23 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'portly.' 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 portly

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for portly

port entry 3

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Time Traveler for portly

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The first known use of portly was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Portly.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/portly. Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for portly


How to pronounce portly (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of portly

somewhat formal : having a round and somewhat fat body


port·​ly | \ ˈpȯrt-lē How to pronounce portly (audio) \
portlier; portliest

Kids Definition of portly

: having a round and heavy body : somewhat fat

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More from Merriam-Webster on portly

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Spanish Central: Translation of portly

Nglish: Translation of portly for Spanish Speakers

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