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 And while many people are likely to come back to the labor force, Ashworth says about half of those who left have retired, possibly limiting the extent to which returning workers will hold down pay increases. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, "'I really had sticker shock': Will a reopening economy mean surging prices for Americans?," 13 May 2021 Mom may feel like a Chicagoan in Paris at La Crêperie, the oldest crêperie in Chicago and possibly the United States. Louisa Chu, chicagotribune.com, "Watch this. Eat that: Watching ‘Mare of Easttown’? Get Chicago’s take on the hoagie," 13 May 2021 Prosecutors often seek the cooperation of someone possibly involved in a crime to obtain confidential information and provide a potential road map to records or documents. Corinne Ramey, WSJ, "Prosecutors Seek Cooperation of Trump Confidant, Subpoena Manhattan Private School," 13 May 2021 Second, Walensky said the CDC needs to evaluate data on whether vaccinated people might possibly be getting infected but not showing symptoms, and could unknowingly transmit the virus to others. Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, "Within CDC, there's debate about how to best advise Americans on masks," 13 May 2021 The Reverend Still took over the parish a decade ago and has successfully reinforced connections between the church and the village, including the possibly unholy figure on the hill. Rebecca Mead, The New Yorker, "The Mysterious Origins of the Cerne Abbas Giant," 12 May 2021 Hiring foreign mercenaries could have changed the composition of communities in the Classical period, possibly providing outsiders a pathway to citizenship not otherwise available. Katherine Reinberger, The Conversation, "Teeth of fallen soldiers hold evidence that foreigners fought alongside ancient Greeks, challenging millennia of military history," 12 May 2021 The Federal Bureau of Investigation said the ransomware attack had been carried out by an organized crime group, DarkSide, which is believed to operate from Eastern Europe, possibly Russia. New York Times, "Gasoline Buying Fever Rages as Pipeline Company Begins Restart," 12 May 2021 By the end of the year, the program will have delivered at least 1.3 billion doses, and possibly 1.8 billion by early 2022, to people in 92 lower-income countries who would otherwise have limited or no access to them. Seth Berkley, Time, "The World Isn’t Getting Vaccinated Fast Enough. Here Are 4 Ways to Fix That," 11 May 2021

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

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Possibly.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/possibly. Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for possibly



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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