- 1Only just; almost not: her voice is so low I can scarcely hear what she is sayingMore example sentences
- The reaction to it has been overwhelmingly positive with scarcely a critical voice to be heard anywhere.
- Democrats in Boston tacitly acknowledged the potential power of this message as the word ‘liberal’ was scarcely heard all week.
- The argument in favour of local shops is scarcely heard.
- 1.1Only a very short time before: she had scarcely dismounted before the door swung openMore example sentences
- The guard was scarcely out of sight when he heard a high shout from behind him.
- That would suggest that the last books can scarcely have been written before the early years of Hadrian's reign, perhaps c. 120.
- 1.2Used to suggest that something is unlikely to be or certainly not the case: they could scarcely all be wrongMore example sentences
rarely, seldom, infrequently, not often, hardly ever, almost never, on rare occasions, every once in a while• informal once in a blue moonnot, hardly, certainly not, definitely not, not at all, on no account, under no circumstances, by no means; North American noway
- Victory over the bypass was sweet, but plans to streamline planning suggest the fight is scarcely over
- While it certainly addresses that trickiest of topics, it can scarcely be considered a novel, at least in any conventional sense of the term.
- While polling suggests Australians oppose privatisations, they are scarcely new and are seen as facts of life.