Definition of dreadfully in US English:



  • 1often as submodifier Extremely.

    ‘you're dreadfully thin’
    ‘I'm dreadfully sorry!’
    • ‘‘I'm dreadfully sorry, little one, but I've forgotten your name,’ he said to her.’
    • ‘‘I heard,’ Joey replied, sounding dreadfully serious, as if he'd heard that someone had died.’
    • ‘I was terrified, dreadfully unhappy and hated myself.’
    • ‘His behaviour was terrible and I am dreadfully sorry that you were exposed to it.’
    • ‘Although many times Sara had heard her say how dreadfully awful his company was.’
    • ‘There's no question that what has happened to her is dreadfully sad, but really she's a very extreme case - a tragic casualty.’
    • ‘This remarkable movie gets dreadfully close to countless numbers of birds as they proceed through their yearly cycle of north and south migration.’
    • ‘Make the rounds of talk shows, say how dreadfully sorry you are, maybe even sob a little.’
    • ‘Assured walls are in fact dreadfully thin and people wake each other up in the night all the time, and have no auditory privacy.’
    • ‘I am dreadfully sorry for what happened in the boat today.’
    • ‘I know a couple of English profs who, after reading this dribble, are dreadfully sorry they gave me an ‘A’.’
    • ‘Both events, one dreadfully sad, one wonderfully happy, illustrate the extremes to which we can be tested in our lives.’
    • ‘I am dreadfully sorry for this inconvenience.’
    • ‘I am really, truly, extremely, dreadfully, horribly sorry!’
    • ‘I received many visits form the various nobility who told me how dreadfully sorry they were at my father's death.’
    • ‘I'm dreadfully sorry to leave after hearing your story, but I am a politically active person, and I will start a petition or - or something!’
    • ‘I feel dreadfully sorry for her and I know Michael will be really upset about it.’
    • ‘I am dreadfully sorry, but am I interrupting an important meeting?’
    • ‘I feel dreadfully sorry for Charlie and I know the whole village will be very upset.’
    • ‘I know it has been so long since I wrote, and I am so dreadfully sorry.’
    extremely, very, really, frightfully, fearfully, exceedingly, immensely, terribly, exceptionally, uncommonly, remarkably, extraordinarily
    very much, intensely, desperately, a great deal, a good deal, to a great extent, much, a lot, lots
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    1. 1.1 Very much.
      ‘I'll miss you dreadfully’
      • ‘Today I had dinner with Alec on the pavement outside Thai Metro and some good cider in the Fitzroy Tavern and missed him dreadfully the minute we said good night.’
      • ‘‘I miss him dreadfully,’ she says, pulling at a piece of wool on her pink cardigan.’
      • ‘I missed SP dreadfully and kept thinking about our last night that we spent together.’
      • ‘She had not yet been allowed to visit him in the cells and he missed her dreadfully.’
      • ‘Suddenly I thought that was unusual, because I realised that every time I've gone to the movies the past couple of months, I've missed her dreadfully as I'm going up into the car park.’
      • ‘I knew why he was gone, but I was just so lonely and I missed him dreadfully.’
      • ‘She missed her young children dreadfully during her 27 month absence from England.’
      • ‘We love him so very much and miss him dreadfully.’
      • ‘That would be a great pity, because they are all lovely people and we shall miss them dreadfully.’
      • ‘They have often been close to their families and are dreadfully missed.’
      • ‘Still, she was going to miss everyone back home dreadfully.’
      • ‘Maggie was sitting on her bunk bed, waiting for father to bring home Sarah - she missed her dreadfully when she was away and she had been afraid to move, for fear that she might wake her mother.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, our mum wanted to take care of us and missed us dreadfully.’
      • ‘We are all very proud of Dan and his achievements in his short but very full life. We all miss him dreadfully.’
      • ‘I wish I could see our child more than this and I miss him dreadfully sometimes, but I have to work very hard these days to support my family.’
      • ‘She is now getting a sense of herself back, after ‘a very long goodbye’, but still misses her mother dreadfully.’
      • ‘Emma will be dreadfully missed and all the school hold her family in their thoughts and prayers during this dreadful time.’
      • ‘I love my job, relish the operational role and will no doubt miss it dreadfully.’
      • ‘Your children need you here and will miss you dreadfully if you left now.’
      • ‘Of course, I will miss you dreadfully now that you won't be here anymore.’
  • 2Very badly.

    ‘the company has performed dreadfully’
    • ‘But isn't it refreshing to be able to tell you about two clubs with a good news story - even though both are performing somewhere between disappointingly and dreadfully on the field?’
    • ‘It can be difficult when you miss your child all day to find they behave dreadfully when they get home.’
    terribly, awfully, very badly, atrociously, dismally, appallingly, abominably, execrably, poorly
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