From Middle English narowly, equivalent to narrow +‎ -ly.



narrowly (comparative more narrowly, superlative most narrowly)

  1. In a narrow manner; without flexibility or latitude.
    They regarded the new idea rather narrowly.
    • 1992, Rudolf M[athias] Schuster, The Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America: East of the Hundredth Meridian, volume V, New York, N.Y.: Columbia University Press, →ISBN, page viii:
      There is now such an immense "microliterature" on hepatics that, beyond a certain point I have given up trying to integrate (and evaluate) every minor paper published—especially narrowly floristic papers.
  2. By a narrow margin; closely.
    They narrowly escaped collision.
    • 1859, George Meredith, The Ordeal of Richard Feverel, Chapter 13:
      One inconsequent dream he related, about fancying himself quite young and rich, and finding himself suddenly in a field cropping razors around him, when, just as he had, by steps dainty as those of a French dancing-master, reached the middle, he to his dismay beheld a path clear of the blood, thirsty steel-crop, which he might have taken at first had he looked narrowly; and there he was.
    • 2011 October 29, Neil Johnston, “Norwich 3 - 3 Blackburn”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      The visitors had not managed an away win in the top flight since the final day of last season, but Mauro Formica set the tone in the second minute with a rasping 25-yard drive which flew narrowly wide.