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EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Middle English symply, symplely; equivalent to simple +‎ -ly, with *-lely simplified to -ly by haplology.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): /ˈsɪmpli/
  • (file)

AdverbEdit

simply (comparative more simply, superlative most simply)

  1. (manner) In a simple way or state; considered in or by itself; without addition; alone.
    Antonym: complexly
  2. (manner) Plainly; without art or subtlety
    Synonyms: clearly, obviously, unquestionably
  3. (manner) Weakly; foolishly; stupidly.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Johnson to this entry?)
  4. (focus) Merely; solely.
    Synonyms: just; see also Thesaurus:merely
    • 2013 June 1, “Ideas coming down the track”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8838, page 13 (Technology Quarterly):
      A “moving platform” scheme [] is more technologically ambitious than maglev trains even though it relies on conventional rails. [] This set-up solves several problems […]. Stopping high-speed trains wastes energy and time, so why not simply slow them down enough for a moving platform to pull alongside?
    • 2019 May 21, Dylan Curran, “Facial recognition will soon be everywhere. Are we prepared?”, in The Guardian[1]:
      Rather than scanning a boarding pass or handing over a passport, you simply stare into a camera and you’re verified.
    I was simply asking a question.
  5. (degree) absolutely, positively.
    That was a simply wonderful dessert.
    Synonyms: very; see also Thesaurus:very
  6. (speech act) Frankly.
    Simply, he just fired you.
    Synonyms: honestly; see also Thesaurus:actually

Related termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

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Middle EnglishEdit

AdverbEdit

simply

  1. Alternative form of symply (adverb)