English

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Pronunciation

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Etymology 1

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From Middle English poorly, pouerly, poreliche, poureliche, pouerliche, equivalent to poor +‎ -ly.

Adverb

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poorly (comparative poorlier or more poorly, superlative poorliest or most poorly)

  1. In a poor manner or condition; without plenty, or sufficiency, or suitable provision for comfort.
    to live poorly
  2. With little or no success; indifferently; with little profit or advantage.
    to do poorly in business
  3. Meanly; without spirit.
  4. Without skill or merit.
    He plays tennis poorly.
  5. In a negative manner; with disapproval.
    I think poorly of them.
    She looked poorly on that suggestion.
Collocations
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Etymology 2

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From poor +‎ -ly.

Adjective

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poorly (not comparable)

  1. (UK) Ill, unwell, sick.
    to report one's child poorly
    • 2011, Peter Liddle, quoting Manya Stern, “Manya Stern – A Polish Jewess, Life under German Occupation, Forced Labour in Germany, and Survivor of Bergen-Belsen”, in Captured Memories 1930–1945: Across the Threshold of War: The Thirties and the War, Barnsley, South Yorkshire: Pen & Sword Military, →ISBN, section two (1939–1945), subsection “On the Home Front”, page 334:
      A hospital was established very quickly – beds and clean sheets and skilled care – then by ambulance my cousin and I were taken to Celle and here hospital staff were wonderful. [] particular attention was given to my cousin who was poorlier than me []
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