pos·​si·​bly | \ ˈpä-sə-blē How to pronounce possibly (audio) \

Definition of possibly

1 : in a possible manner : by any possibility that's all she could possibly do
2 : by merest chance : perhaps possibly he will recover
3 : it is possible or imaginable : conceivably a political libel which may possibly damage me— G. B. Shaw

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Examples of possibly in a Sentence

he may possibly recover after such a serious mistake, but it doesn't seem likely
Recent Examples on the Web On the other hand, if the Fed hadn’t acted, the market would almost certainly be lower, possibly disastrously so. ... James Mackintosh, WSJ, "The Fed (Mostly) Didn’t Cause the Latest Stock Market Melt-Up," 14 Jan. 2020 The event is being held despite the fact that the White House says the deal, initially reached last October, still has at least one more phase and possibly two to do before it is finished. Sean Higgins, Washington Examiner, "Trump expected to claim victory in the China trade war, for now," 14 Jan. 2020 What harm could such a diminutive, charming quantity of spirituous liquid possibly wreak on an otherwise-subdued evening? Amiel Stanek, Bon Appétit, "I’m Too Old For Shots But Not “Thimbles” of Liquor," 14 Jan. 2020 But that finding alone doesn't explain how a sunspot could possibly cause a gray whale to get lost. Fox News, "Solar storms might be causing gray whales to get lost," 13 Jan. 2020 But the talking classes had reached an absolute consensus that no politicians who departed significantly from it could possibly win elections. David Graeber, The New York Review of Books, "The Center Blows Itself Up: Care and Spite in the ‘Brexit Election’," 13 Jan. 2020 This also means that Disney will possibly reshoot the first two episodes before continuing production. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "The "Lizzie McGuire" Reboot Has Paused Production in Order to Go Into a "Different Creative Direction"," 10 Jan. 2020 This behavior, detailed in their study, published this week in the journal Current Biology, is possibly a consequence of evolving in giant, shifting flocks where an altruistic reputation is helpful, the authors say. National Geographic, "Parrots help others in need, study shows for first time," 10 Jan. 2020 By itself, a website devoted to (possibly fake) dreams about Celine Dion is perhaps not our most urgent archival task. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "The Man Who Collected Dreams About Celine Dion," 10 Jan. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for possibly

Time Traveler

The first known use of possibly was in the 14th century

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Statistics for possibly

Last Updated

17 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Possibly.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/possibly. Accessed 21 January 2020.

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More Definitions for possibly


How to pronounce possibly (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of possibly

used to say something might happen, exist, or be true but is not certain
used to show shock or surprise at something
used to ask for something politely


pos·​si·​bly | \ ˈpä-sə-blē How to pronounce possibly (audio) \

Kids Definition of possibly

1 : by any possibility That cannot possibly be true.
2 : by chance : perhaps Possibly it will rain.

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Comments on possibly

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


good-natured easy friendliness

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