- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈskɛəsli/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈskɛɹsli/
Audio (US) (file)
- Hyphenation: scarce‧ly
- (modal) Probably not.
- One could scarcely find any trout in the stream without the stocking program.
- (modal) Certainly not.
- One could scarcely expect the man to know how to fly a helicopter.
- 1842, William Godwin, An Enquiry Concerning Political Justice:
- He did not enter upon the subject without being aware that government by its very nature counteracts the improvement of individual intellect; but, as the views he entertains in this particular are out of the common road, it is scarcely to be wondered at that he understood the proposition more completely as he proceeded, and saw more distinctly into the nature of the remedy.
- 1914, Saki, “Dusk”, in Beasts and Super-Beasts:
- His clothes could scarcely be called shabby, at least they passed muster in the half-light, but one’s imagination could not have pictured the wearer embarking on the purchase of a half-crown box of chocolates or laying out ninepence on a carnation buttonhole.
- (degree) Hardly: only just; by a small margin.
- 1859 November 24, Charles Darwin, chapter VI, in On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, […], London: John Murray, […], →OCLC, page 188:
- It is scarcely possible to avoid comparing the eye to a telescope.
- 1875 December 7, Ulysses S. Grant, Ulysses S. Grant's Seventh State of the Union Address:
- In 1776 manufactories scarcely existed even in name in all this vast territory.
- 1921 June, Margery Williams, “The Velveteen Rabbit: Or How Toys Become Real”, in Harper’s Bazar, volume LVI, number 6 (2504 overall), New York, N.Y.: International Magazine Company, →ISSN, →OCLC:
- That night, and for many nights after, the Velveteen Rabbit slept in the Boy’s bed. At first he found it rather uncomfortable, for the Boy hugged him very tight, and sometimes he rolled over on him, and sometimes he pushed him so far under the pillow that the Rabbit could scarcely breathe.
- 1993, Baltasar Gracián, translated by Joseph Jacobs, The Art of Worldly Wisdom:
- Nature scarcely ever gives us the very best—for that we must have recourse to art.
Usage notes edit
- Compare We scarcely ever eat fish. with We almost never eat fish.
- The sentence We scarcely never eat fish is ungrammatical.
- (degree: by a small margin): barely, hardly
- (barely, almost not or not quite): barely, just, hardly, only just
almost not, by a small margin
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.