-ly Changing the Meaning

-ly Changing the Meaning

cleanly 

He vaulted cleanly through the open window. (smoothly)


closely 

study something closely (densely / compactly / thoroughly)


coldly 

We received them coldly. (in an unfriendly way)


coolly 

He behaved very coolly in this dangerous situation. (calmly / courageously)


dearly 

I love my parents dearly. (fondly / tenderly)

but pay dearly (with much loss)


deeply 

I was deeply hurt. / regret deeply (greatly)


directly 

I will tell you directly. (immediately)


easily 

He climbed the mountain easily. (without difficulty)


flatly 

‘You'd better go’ she said flatly. 

He flatly refused to go off. 

I applied the paint flatly. (little interest or emotion, absolutely, in a smooth and even way)


freely 

You may speak freely. (without restriction)


fully 

I fully understand. (completely)


hardly 

It hardly matters now. (scarcely / barely)


highly 

He is highly thought of. (very much)


hotly 

They denied the accusation hotly. (indignantly)


justly 

I am justly proud of my company (based on truth)


lastly 

Lastly, I would like to thank my parents. (finally / in the last place)


lately 

I have not seen him lately. (recently)


mostly 

I practised mostly all day (usually / mainly)


nearly 

She was nearly asleep. (almost)


presently 

He'll be here presently. (soon)


prettily 

eat prettily, behave prettily, be dressed prettily (in a pretty way)


rightly

It is easy as you rightly say. (correctly / justly)

sharply 

I was sharply reprimanded. (harshly / roughly)


shortly 

shortly after, shortly before (soon)

but to say shortly (in a few words)


surely 

He will surely win. (definitely with no doubt)


tightly 

Hold on tightly. The door was shut tight. (firmly)


warmly 

She welcomed us warmly. (in a friendly way) 

but warmly dressed = wearing warm clothes


widely 

widely different (to a large extent)


wrongly 

He was wrongly convicted. (unjustly)

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