Definition of peacefully in US English:



  • 1Without disturbance; tranquilly.

    ‘the baby slept peacefully in its cradle’
    • ‘I used to go to the studio in the morning and come back at night and sleep peacefully.’
    • ‘Unlike Chinese people who wait for death peacefully, Westerners will fight it to their last breath.’
    • ‘The villagers slept peacefully, never imagining the fate that was to be.’
    • ‘Late that night we pulled into a cheap motel, cashed an unemployment check, and fell peacefully to sleep.’
    • ‘In her arms was a newborn baby girl, peacefully sleeping, wrapped in a light pink towel.’
    • ‘Jess was still peacefully sleeping on the back seats.’
    • ‘She slept so silently and peacefully he almost regretted being there.’
    • ‘There is a photograph of a pretty young woman, obviously pregnant, sleeping peacefully on a hospital bed.’
    • ‘She immediately looked over at Caleb who was still sleeping peacefully.’
    • ‘The tiny twin baby girls sleeping peacefully side by side are little miracles.’
    • ‘The duke walked over to the cradle and looked down to see his daughter sleeping peacefully.’
    • ‘For at least 40,000 years, they gathered shellfish and peacefully slept under the stars.’
    • ‘I was sleeping peacefully for once in my 18 years of life, a shock to me still.’
    • ‘As she entered the living room, she saw him, for the first time in many months, sleeping peacefully on the floor.’
    • ‘How do we talk peacefully with people with whom we might violently disagree?’
    • ‘For the first time since her mother's death, Erin felt peacefully calm and content.’
    • ‘She had been playing peacefully in her room, oblivious to the violence that had occurred only a few rooms over.’
    • ‘The girl seeks protection from a nurse or grandmother while the baby sleeps peacefully in its mother's arms.’
    • ‘I sat straight up in bed, and saw Dustin sleeping peacefully next to me.’
    • ‘With little disturbance, she is spending her time peacefully.’
    1. 1.1 (of death) without pain.
      ‘she suffered a stroke and died peacefully in her sleep’
      • ‘The coffin will remain open because of a Russian tradition going back to the time when people were suspicious that some of their tsars had not died peacefully.’
      • ‘He died peacefully in his sleep, surrounded by family and friends.’
      • ‘She died peacefully on Monday at the Great Western Hospital.’
      • ‘He died peacefully in his sleep after losing his two-and-a-half year battle against cancer.’
      • ‘She was in her early 80s and died peacefully after a long illness.’
      • ‘Half a year later he died peacefully, a natural death, with dignity.’
      • ‘She died peacefully with her daughter and grandchildren by her side.’
      • ‘But the cancer returned, and he died peacefully on Wednesday at his home in Connecticut.’
      • ‘A few days ago complications emerged and he was returned to hospital, where he died peacefully in his sleep early on Saturday morning.’
      • ‘I would like the option to say my goodbyes and slip peacefully away before the pain claims me and my mind and body fail.’
      • ‘He died peacefully in the kind care of his devoted family.’
      • ‘He died peacefully at home, surrounded by family and friends.’
      • ‘But if it wasn't unheard of for a ruler of Constantinople to die peacefully in his bed, it was also not the norm.’
      • ‘I am so grateful he died peacefully with his family.’
      • ‘Campaigners argue that it is better for a patient to choose to die peacefully and in dignity, than in great pain.’
      • ‘She never recovered from the injuries and died peacefully last week.’
      • ‘The Princess died peacefully in her sleep at 6.30 am on Saturday after suffering a third stroke and developing heart problems.’
      • ‘She was supposed to live to a ripe old age and die peacefully in her sleep, devoid of any pain.’
      • ‘On Saturday night at 9.40 pm he passed away peacefully in his sleep, surrounded by his wife and family.’
      • ‘She died peacefully at home, surrounded by members of her family.’
  • 2Without war or violence.

    ‘the siege ended peacefully’
    • ‘Officers had previously believed that negotiations were proving effective, raising hopes the siege could be resolved peacefully.’
    • ‘The siege ended peacefully five days later when riot police moved in.’
    • ‘It is tyrannical because, while it asserts a global monopoly of violence, we cannot peacefully remove and replace it.’
    • ‘That role may diminish or even disappear if change is not forthcoming - and it may do so violently rather than peacefully.’
    • ‘A police siege of his house ended peacefully with his surrender to authorities.’