Definition of ostensibly in English:



  • As appears or is stated to be true, though not necessarily so; apparently.

    ‘the party secretary resigned, ostensibly from ill health’
    • ‘The report was ostensibly to be a reply to a questionnaire sent by the League.’
    • ‘And he's currently watching The Saint DVDs, although they were ostensibly for me.’
    • ‘It serves fish fingers, ostensibly for the kids, though I'd guess a few adult portions have also been dished out.’
    • ‘So, ostensibly, the Chancellor should worry - but appearances may be deceptive.’
    • ‘Children were separated from adults ostensibly to give children more freedom.’
    • ‘All pubs in Limerick city and county may ostensibly be obeying to the smoking ban.’
    • ‘I rarely read sci-fi books - ostensibly because I find it hard to relate to the characters and story.’
    • ‘They were then flown to Japan, ostensibly because he needed emergency medical care for an abdominal problem.’
    • ‘Late in the day, Martyn the Builder came along ostensibly to check on the roof covering.’
    • ‘It was ostensibly naughty, but I like to think I had quite noble motives.’
    • ‘The main thrust of the whole stakeholder exercise was ostensibly to make low-cost pensions available to all.’
    • ‘Naked commercialism was evident in even the most ostensibly charitable aspects of the operation.’
    • ‘The happenstance of the love for the tree house, ostensibly built for the children, might well have been your undoing.’
    • ‘While this treatment of the story seems ostensibly simple, it's anything but.’
    • ‘She sits in on my interview with Dempsey, ostensibly because he is new to the spotlight and still nervous about talking to the press.’
    • ‘His aim, ostensibly, was to bring liberty and equality to the oppressed peoples of that continent.’
    • ‘Amorth presents his ostensibly absurd stories convincingly, with charm and plenty of natural levity.’
    • ‘But Barnes has produced a bleak and profound meditation on love and loss from an ostensibly banal premise.’
    • ‘While dressed in white, Sarah is ostensibly a chaste housewife, in red she becomes the lustful Dolores.’
    • ‘Like that lady, Health Canada wants us to quit smoking ostensibly for health purposes.’
    apparently, seemingly, on the face of it, to all appearances, on the surface, to all intents and purposes, outwardly, superficially, allegedly, professedly, supposedly, purportedly
    pretendedly, ostensively
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