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

Since 1933 it has been ingloriously tucked into a corner of Philadelphia’s 30th Street Station, seen by no one except, possibly, those passengers... Willard Spiegelman, WSJ, "A Prophetic Paean to Progress," 1 Mar. 2019 The story will revolve around ISIS sympathizers who are possibly planning an attack. Megan Stein, Country Living, "A 'JAG' Reunion Is Coming to 'NCIS: LA' and We Are Losing It," 7 Apr. 2019 Here’s why: The job of the polystyrene panels is to protect the wood framing from any cold, possibly damp, air that passes through the concrete. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "How to Finish Your Basement," 18 Apr. 2019 Well, apparently whoever killed Mrs. Delgado could possibly be the same person responsible for Linda's demise, too. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "'Blue Bloods' Reveals Danny Reagan Is Teaming Up With the Person Behind Linda's Death," 12 Apr. 2019 One of the oldest examples in English, Daniel Defoe’s 1719 novel Robinson Crusoe, is widely considered to be the beginning of realistic fiction in literature — and possibly the first English novel, to boot. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "Arctic is a pure distillation of the man vs. nature genre," 1 Feb. 2019 Over 57,000 users, and possibly up to a million, have downloaded and installed a version of the Asus Live Update utility that was poisoned with a backdoor and hosted on the official Asus servers. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Update: Asus issues fix for ShadowHammer attack, and a tool to detect if your PC was affected," 26 Mar. 2019 Oh, inflammatory bowel disease, what could anyone possibly have done to deserve you? Korin Miller, SELF, "13 Surprising Medical Conditions That Can Cause Weight Gain or Loss (and When to Go to the Doctor)," 12 Nov. 2018 Ever notice that some college offense will line up and possibly go through some motion or quarterback cadence before 11 heads suddenly turn to the sideline? Andy Staples, SI.com, "Like It or Not, College Football Is Influencing the NFL," 12 July 2018

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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Statistics for possibly

Last Updated

23 May 2019

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Time Traveler for possibly

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

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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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More from Merriam-Webster on possibly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for possibly

Spanish Central: Translation of possibly

Nglish: Translation of possibly for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of possibly for Arabic Speakers

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