prob·​a·​bly ˈprä-bə-blē How to pronounce probably (audio)
: insofar as seems reasonably true, factual, or to be expected : without much doubt
is probably happy
it will probably rain

Example Sentences

The impact probably added all but the last few percent of Earth's mass and set the stage for Earth's and the Moon's subsequent evolution. Mark Wilson, Physics Today, February 2008 It was no secret that McKay preferred the thrill of victory to the agony of defeat, and that, along with his innocent optimism and snark-free sincerity, probably makes him hopelessly old-fashioned. Richard Hoffer, Sports Illustrated, 16 June 2008 But what these newly inaugurated gym rats probably don't know is that besides buffing up their bodies for summer, they're also buffing up their brains. Christen Brownlee, Science News, 25 Feb. 2006 It will probably rain today. They will probably be here soon. It was probably the best concert I've ever been to. There were probably about 150 people at the wedding. “Are you going to the picnic?” “Probably.” “Can you finish painting the room today?” “Probably not.” See More
Recent Examples on the Web Limiting the practice of law only to licensed lawyers probably made sense at the time, given that lawyers were largely solo practitioners. Michael Waters, The New Republic, 22 Nov. 2022 Hampton Inn smokes ‘em on style points -- but a Buc-ee’s can’s probably cleaner than some fast casual dining rooms. Matt Wake |, al, 22 Nov. 2022 That thought probably occurs to most parents at some point. Faith Hill, The Atlantic, 22 Nov. 2022 In essence, demand from Millennials will probably help keep prices from entering freefall -- as was the case in 2008. Erik Lundh, CNN, 22 Nov. 2022 That’s why the kettlebell dead stop swing is probably going to be your next favorite move. Diego Mercado, Men's Health, 17 Nov. 2022 Finally, the Federated tab shows you every single post published in the entire Fediverse, which is probably going to be pretty overwhelming. WIRED, 16 Nov. 2022 Target’s laser focus on customer experience is probably going to weigh on its bottom line for a while, but hitting short-term targets isn’t the way to win the long game. Jinjoo Lee, WSJ, 16 Nov. 2022 These best new artist nominees are probably going to be sending a lot of people to Wikipedia. Paul Grein, Billboard, 15 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'probably.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


see probable entry 1

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of probably was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near probably

Cite this Entry

“Probably.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition



prob·​a·​bly ˈpräb-(ə-)blē How to pronounce probably (audio)
: without much doubt : very likely

More from Merriam-Webster on probably

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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