Definition of dreadfully in US English:



  • 1often as submodifier Extremely.

    ‘you're dreadfully thin’
    ‘I'm dreadfully sorry!’
    • ‘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, but am I interrupting an important meeting?’
    • ‘I am dreadfully sorry for this inconvenience.’
    • ‘Although many times Sara had heard her say how dreadfully awful his company was.’
    • ‘I know a couple of English profs who, after reading this dribble, are dreadfully sorry they gave me an ‘A’.’
    • ‘I am really, truly, extremely, dreadfully, horribly sorry!’
    • ‘I feel dreadfully sorry for Charlie and I know the whole village will be very upset.’
    • ‘Both events, one dreadfully sad, one wonderfully happy, illustrate the extremes to which we can be tested in our lives.’
    • ‘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 know it has been so long since I wrote, and I am so dreadfully sorry.’
    • ‘I feel dreadfully sorry for her and I know Michael will be really upset about it.’
    • ‘I was terrified, dreadfully unhappy and hated myself.’
    • ‘There's no question that what has happened to her is dreadfully sad, but really she's a very extreme case - a tragic casualty.’
    • ‘Make the rounds of talk shows, say how dreadfully sorry you are, maybe even sob a little.’
    • ‘This remarkable movie gets dreadfully close to countless numbers of birds as they proceed through their yearly cycle of north and south migration.’
    • ‘‘I'm dreadfully sorry, little one, but I've forgotten your name,’ he said to her.’
    • ‘I am dreadfully sorry for what happened in the boat today.’
    • ‘‘I heard,’ Joey replied, sounding dreadfully serious, as if he'd heard that someone had died.’
    • ‘His behaviour was terrible and I am dreadfully sorry that you were exposed to it.’
    • ‘I received many visits form the various nobility who told me how dreadfully sorry they were at my father's death.’
    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’
      • ‘Emma will be dreadfully missed and all the school hold her family in their thoughts and prayers during this dreadful time.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘She had not yet been allowed to visit him in the cells and he missed her dreadfully.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘We are all very proud of Dan and his achievements in his short but very full life. We all miss him dreadfully.’
      • ‘Your children need you here and will miss you dreadfully if you left now.’
      • ‘She missed her young children dreadfully during her 27 month absence from England.’
      • ‘Of course, I will miss you dreadfully now that you won't be here anymore.’
      • ‘They have often been close to their families and are dreadfully missed.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, our mum wanted to take care of us and missed us dreadfully.’
      • ‘I love my job, relish the operational role and will no doubt miss it dreadfully.’
      • ‘I missed SP dreadfully and kept thinking about our last night that we spent together.’
      • ‘‘I miss him dreadfully,’ she says, pulling at a piece of wool on her pink cardigan.’
      • ‘She is now getting a sense of herself back, after ‘a very long goodbye’, but still misses her mother dreadfully.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘I knew why he was gone, but I was just so lonely and I missed 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.’
  • 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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