WordWeight : Weighing the Words


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Definitions of Lightly

Pronunciation : Light"ly
Part of Speech : adv.
Definition : 1. With little weight; with little force; as, to tread lightly; to press lightly. Yet shall thy grave with rising flowers be drest, And the green turf lie lightly on thy breast. Pope. Him thus intent Ithuriel with his spear Touched lightly. Milton.

2. Swiftly; nimbly; with agility. So mikle was that barge, it might not lightly sail. R. of Brunne. Watch what thou seest and lightly bring me word. Tennyson.

3. Without deep impression. The soft ideas of the cheerful note, Lightly received, were easily forgot. Prior.

4. In a small degree; slightly; not severely. At the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun . . . and afterward did more grievously afflict her. Is. ix. 1.

5. With little effort or difficulty; easily; readily. That lightly come, shall lightly go. Old Proverb. They come lightly by the malt, and need not spare it. Sir W. Scott.

6. Without reason, or for reasons of little weight. Flatter not the rich, neither do thou willingly or lightly appear before great personages. Jer. Taylor.

7. Commonly; usually. [Obs.] Bp. Fisher. The great thieves of a state are lightly the officers of the crown. B. Jonson.

8. Without dejection; cheerfully. "Seeming to bear it lightly." Shak.

9. Without heed or care; with levity; gayly; airily. Matrimony . . . is not by any to be enterprised, nor taken in hand, unadvisedly, lightly, or wantonly. Book of Common Prayer [Eng. Ed.].

10. Not chastely; wantonly. Swift.
Source : Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, 1913

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