Definition of really in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈrē(ə)lē/


1In actual fact, as opposed to what is said or imagined to be true or possible: so what really happened? they’re not really my aunt and uncle [sentence adverb]: really, there are only three options
More example sentences
  • In actual fact I didn't really see him make many mistakes with that at all.
  • In actual fact, what you really see in the television studio is a blank blue screen.
  • If they really are true supporters, they might consider getting behind the club and working for its future.
in fact, in actual fact, actually, in reality, in point of fact, as a matter of fact, in truth, to tell the truth
archaic in sooth
1.1Used to add strength, sincerity, or seriousness to a statement or opinion: I really want to go I’m sorry, Ruth, I really am you really ought to tell her
More example sentences
  • It is really time that the opinions of the people of this country were heard clearly by our politicians.
  • Normally, that ought to be a sure sign to someone like me that I really ought to forget about it.
  • The negative ones echo my own opinion that the book really isn't very good.
1.2Seriously (used in questions and exclamations with an implied negative answer): do you really expect me to believe that?
More example sentences
  • Are we really entitled to shout questions at politicians and expect answers whenever we want?
  • In the face of the complicated nature of pornography can any of us really answer this seemingly simple question?
  • In a time of increased tensions, is further segregation really the answer?
2 [as submodifier] Very; thoroughly: I think she’s really great a really cold day he writes really well
More example sentences
  • Before we did anything we wrote and rewrote the script until we felt what we had got written down was a really good story.
  • The problem is, this is the bit about card writing and receiving I really enjoy.
  • The woman who wrote it was really off with me right from the minute we met.
very, extremely, thoroughly, decidedly, exceptionally, exceedingly, immensely, monumentally, tremendously, uncommonly, unbelievably, remarkably, eminently, extraordinarily, incredibly, most, downright, terrifically, awfully, so, ever so
informal totally, ultra, too —— for words, seriously, real, mighty, awful, plumb, powerful, way


1Used to express interest, surprise, or doubt: “I’ve been working hard.” “Really?”
More example sentences
  • People remember 10%, 20%...Oh Really?
no kidding, for real, is that so, is that a fact, is that right
1.1Used to express mild protest: really, Marjorie, you do jump to conclusions!
1.2chiefly US Used to express agreement: “It’s a nightmare finding somewhere to live in this town.” “Yeah, really.”


really and truly

Used to emphasize the sincerity of a statement or opinion: I sometimes wonder whether you really and truly love me
More example sentences
  • But ‘despite all that, it is still not a proper job and I continue to have the distinct feeling that, really and truly, I should have been at work.’
  • What seems to have been forgotten in all this recent discussion of the fairness of lodging house bylaws is that students, really and truly, are very different from average citizens.
  • I'll try, really and truly, to snap out of it quickly.

Words that rhyme with really

biyearly, yearly

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: re·al·ly

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