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hard +‎ ly



Hardly (comparative {{{1}}}, superlative {{{2}}})




  1. (manner, obsolete) Firmly, vigorously, with strength or exertion.
    • 1603, John Florio, translating Michel de Montaigne, Essays, Folio Society 2006, vol. 1 p. 148:
      Let him hardly be possest with an honest curiositie to search out the nature and causes of all things [...].
  2. (manner, archaic) Harshly, severely.
    I can't really deal hardly with people.
  3. (manner, obsolete) With difficulty.
    • 1603, John Florio, translating Michel de Montaigne, Essays, Folio Society 2006, vol. 1, p. 234:
      And what gentle flame soever doth warme the heart of young virgins, yet are they hardly drawne to leave and forgoe their mothers, to betake them to their husbands [...].
    He made his way hardly through the enemies to the castle.
  4. (degree) Barely, only just, almost not.
    I hardly ever watch television.
    I hardly think they'll come in this bad weather.
    It is hardly possible he could lose the election.

Usage notes[]

In the sense "barely", it is grammatically a negative word. It therefore collocates with ever rather than never.

  • Compare example sentence with I almost never watch television


  • (barely): scarcely


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

et:hardly el:hardly es:hardly fr:hardly io:hardly it:hardly ku:hardly hu:hardly ml:hardly nl:hardly ja:hardly pl:hardly simple:hardly fi:hardly te:hardly vi:hardly zh:hardly