Definition of really in English:



  • 1In actual fact, as opposed to what is said or imagined to be true or possible.

    ‘so what really happened?’
    ‘they're not really my aunt and uncle’
    [sentence adverb] ‘really, there are only three options’
    • ‘The boldness comes in the fact that this is really the end of the film.’
    • ‘If they really are true supporters, they might consider getting behind the club and working for its future.’
    • ‘I think we should all turn to the person on our left and acknowledge the fact that we really are blessed.’
    • ‘Anyone who imagines a perfect bureaucracy really is living in a world of fantasy.’
    • ‘In actual fact I didn't really see him make many mistakes with that at all.’
    • ‘In fact teaching and research really constitute a single mission, the pursuit of knowledge.’
    • ‘It's not really possible to say as I'm 20 pages and less than a single chapter into the book.’
    • ‘Could it really be the fact or the case that we only value allies who disagree with us?’
    • ‘The spirits were incredibly high, as you can imagine, and they really went out of their way to get me involved.’
    • ‘Perhaps it is time to wake up to the fact that there really is only one person to blame for all these happenings and that is ourselves.’
    • ‘The other thing I really liked was the fact that the story really was neverending.’
    • ‘In actual fact, what you really see in the television studio is a blank blue screen.’
    • ‘Can it really be possible that the web has an innate ability to unite its users into some more powerful collective?’
    • ‘Is it really possible to sue people over email when the address is not verifiable?’
    • ‘It was a fascinating story and well worth the telling, but is it likely or possible that Davis was really so sainted?’
    • ‘Again, neither the affirmative nor the negative answer is really satisfactory.’
    • ‘The ticket stub in my wallet has served as a reminder that it really was true.’
    • ‘It's just that he thinks this is a fact and nothing really can be done about it.’
    • ‘Despite their size and the fact that they really are sharks, they are gentle, harmless creatures.’
    • ‘It s no longer really possible to live up to that part of the custom but the spirit remains the same.’
    in fact, in actual fact, actually, in reality, in point of fact, as a matter of fact, in truth, if truth be told, to tell the truth, in actuality
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    1. 1.1Used to add strength, sincerity, or seriousness to a statement or opinion.
      ‘I really want to go’
      ‘I'm sorry, Ruth, I really am’
      ‘you really ought to tell her’
      • ‘Inevitably there will be people who think I ought really to be getting married.’
      • ‘Sit on this porch, persuade the few tourist cars that arrived that they really ought to turn back.’
      • ‘They have been called the best live band in Britain so often that they really ought to get it printed on stationery.’
      • ‘The authorities, in all their wisdom, really ought to dream up a more appealing format, you feel.’
      • ‘I ought really to balance this out with a list of the good things that happened.’
      • ‘When you've finished you wonder why you made all that fuss, and I really ought to be used to it by now.’
      • ‘I really ought to hope that the murderous pair repented before they died.’
      • ‘Yes, you really ought to hate Richards for all that good fortune, but the trouble is, you can't.’
      • ‘Because of the nature of the estate and the situation of the post office this is one branch that we really ought to fight to retain.’
      • ‘If they would, they really ought to stop what they're doing now and go home.’
      • ‘I really cannot imagine just how much rubbish she and her partner can possibly generate.’
      • ‘Having been such a fan of the films for so long, I thought I really ought to see what inspired them.’
      • ‘So I really ought to walk the mile to Lisa's workplace to meet her for lunch now.’
      • ‘There's their flatmate William who really ought to be getting a place of his own by now.’
      • ‘But people really ought to be ecstatic because it's become such an awful place to work.’
      • ‘The next step is then to find all the things that you think really ought to fit into the definition of existence.’
      • ‘Normally, that ought to be a sure sign to someone like me that I really ought to forget about it.’
      • ‘I'm getting the urge to redesign the site again but really ought to wait and see the year out I think!’
      • ‘It is really time that the opinions of the people of this country were heard clearly by our politicians.’
      • ‘The negative ones echo my own opinion that the book really isn't very good.’
      genuinely, truly, honestly
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    2. 1.2Seriously (used in questions and exclamations with an implied negative answer)
      ‘do you really expect me to believe that?’
      • ‘Ok, nobody likes messy pavements or hawking in public, but is fining people for doing it really the answer?’
      • ‘You keep talking about equal culpability, but that is not really the question, is it?’
      • ‘Does the minister really believe that changing the lyrics of rap records would reduce gun use?’
      • ‘Will getting motorists to drive more slowly on the motorway really help reduce global warming?’
      • ‘So can it really be true that his latest film is, well, quite funny?’
      • ‘As an aside, I'd like to ask the question: Do questions really need to be justified?’
      • ‘Is there really a very frightening and powerful structure behind this man, or not?’
      • ‘Do you think an organised group like yours can really have an impact on who wins?’
      • ‘Can this medium really have a genuine impact on the masses or is it another internet fashion?’
      • ‘Are we really entitled to shout questions at politicians and expect answers whenever we want?’
      • ‘Do those who write this stuff really think that people who teach small children have small minds?’
      • ‘In a time of increased tensions, is further segregation really the answer?’
      • ‘Amazingly feminist and real about the women's feelings, can it really have been written by a bloke?’
      • ‘Who really imagines it's possible to tell from one frame whether or a tape is genuine?’
      • ‘In the face of the complicated nature of pornography can any of us really answer this seemingly simple question?’
      • ‘Can a director really make an impact doing only things that come easily to him?’
      • ‘Does she really imagine that the way forward for the party is not to embrace change?’
      • ‘Is it really a question of jurisdiction or whether there is a justiciable issue?’
      • ‘If you fine them, is the fine going to really impact on the children rather than on the parent?’
      • ‘Is this really the answer for Scotland, which boasts some of the greatest salmon streams in the world?’
      genuinely, honestly, with all sincerity, truly, truthfully, wholeheartedly, with all one's heart, from the bottom of one's heart, earnestly, fervently, seriously
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  • 2[as submodifier] Very; thoroughly.

    ‘I think she's really great’
    ‘a really cold day’
    ‘he writes really well’
    • ‘The woman who wrote it was really off with me right from the minute we met.’
    • ‘It's a really difficult question to answer because we can do a lot about dissymmetry.’
    • ‘It may be that there is a really straightforward answer and that it appears here somewhere.’
    • ‘He has often wondered why his blog is so popular but it comes down to the guy can write really well.’
    • ‘Before we did anything we wrote and rewrote the script until we felt what we had got written down was a really good story.’
    • ‘There may well be a case for introducing more demanding questions for the really high flyers.’
    • ‘All the poor guy can do is try to answer the question before something really nasty happens.’
    • ‘Imagine George Orwell, only with slightly different political opinions and in a really bad mood.’
    • ‘Not training due to my cold has really started to worry me, to eat away at me.’
    • ‘I was so angry about colonization and really into the fact that Canada has a lot of stolen land.’
    • ‘I ask all of those sorts of questions because I am really concerned about this issue.’
    • ‘The idea was to give us peace and quiet, but it was really cold, and suddenly we weren't going so quick.’
    • ‘If you're really good at answering questions there are now two ways you can earn money.’
    • ‘The really big question for the rest of us in Europe is what victory for one side or the other will mean in economic terms.’
    • ‘I had a day off yesterday and as you can see I got some really deep poems written.’
    • ‘The problem is, this is the bit about card writing and receiving I really enjoy.’
    • ‘If you are running behind time it is much more effective to answer all questions briefly than it is to answer a few really well.’
    • ‘In fact, ginger is really versatile in its health benefits so you should try it in various ways.’
    • ‘We only have about two months of winter here and only one of those is really cold.’
    • ‘In other words, it's a question of what really gets you impassioned, instinctively.’
    very, extremely, thoroughly, decidedly, awfully, terribly, frightfully, dreadfully, fearfully, exceptionally, exceedingly, immensely, uncommonly, remarkably, eminently, extraordinarily, most, positively, downright
    genuinely, truly, honestly
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  • 1Used to express interest, surprise, or doubt.

    ‘“I've been working hard.” “Really?”’
    • ‘People remember 10%, 20%...Oh Really?’
    is that so, is that a fact, well i never, well i never did
    go on, you don't say
    well blow me down with a feather, well knock me down with a feather
    well i'll be blowed
    well what do you know about that
    go to
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    1. 1.1Used to express mild protest.
      ‘really, Marjorie, you do jump to conclusions!’
    2. 1.2US Used to express agreement.
      ‘“It's a nightmare finding somewhere to live in this town.” “Yeah, really.”’