Definition of seriously in US English:



  • 1In a solemn or considered manner.

    ‘the doctor looked seriously at him’
    • ‘They treated my questions seriously and thoughtfully, helping me to see how Christianity answers the issues raised by modern culture.’
    solemnly, earnestly, gravely, soberly, sombrely, without smiling, with a poker face, sternly, grimly, dourly, humourlessly
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  • 2With earnest intent; not lightly or superficially.

    ‘I seriously considered canceling my subscription’
    • ‘If a child is allergic to a pet, talk seriously with the doctor about the need to find a new home for the animal.’
    • ‘I seriously consider calling him and cancelling if he is still far away.’
    • ‘Jason was the first guy that I seriously thought might go somewhere.’
    • ‘Designed thoughtfully and implemented seriously, it can eventually become your primary source of new hires.’
    • ‘The doctor seemed to contemplate this quite seriously, his fingers coming up to tap at his chin bemusedly.’
    • ‘I also observe that while not bound to accept a joint submission, the court must seriously consider it and not lightly reject it.’
    • ‘He's currently single, though he thinks seriously these days about settling down.’
    • ‘We're seriously considering moving to Iceland.’
    • ‘If that offends you, it shows that you have not really thought seriously about what's going on.’
    • ‘Rumsfeld's resignation was never seriously contemplated by Bush.’
    • ‘I think if a doctor is seriously putting forward that proposition, it would be quite inappropriate to just do neuropsychological testing and leave it at that.’
    • ‘If and when we move back to Devon (and every time I go there recently I seriously contemplate it) Ashburton is top of the list of places to buy a house.’
    • ‘During the process of visiting the other property, for the first time Jennie thought seriously about her ‘dream’.’
    • ‘I seriously question whether we are capable of staging the event.’
    • ‘Therefore, we must seriously ask whether treatment to lower raised blood glucose should be started much earlier.’
    • ‘He urged farmers not in debt already to consider it seriously.’
    • ‘I seriously question whether a prosecution with that result is appropriate in a case of this character.’
    • ‘Pakistan must have seriously thought over her unilateral offer of cease-fire.’
    • ‘It was not seriously argued that the manner of the search was unreasonable.’
    • ‘Be sure you understand the details of cruise cancellation terms, and seriously consider buying travel insurance.’
    1. 2.1 Really or sincerely (used especially to indicate a response of surprise or shock)
      ‘do you seriously believe that I would jeopardize my career by such acts?’
      • ‘Before he came along there really, truly, seriously were people who believed that New Labour MPs didn't do that sort of thing.’
      • ‘Nobody seriously believes that teaching children in batches of 20 or 30 can offer an appropriately individualised education.’
      • ‘No one, I believe, seriously imagines that the proposals in their present form are either wise or necessary.’
      • ‘So you seriously expect me to believe that you, the sponsor of this revolting stunt, had no idea what the stunt involved?’
      • ‘They don't seriously expect us to believe that the cash economy was quite that big…’
      • ‘See, he actually, seriously believed he was a demon hunter and could see demons.’
      • ‘I seriously thought there'd be a riot or something.’
      • ‘I seriously suggest you to get out of the business of writing.’
      • ‘I find it hard to believe that anyone can seriously assert the equivalence of atrocities on both sides.’
      • ‘I'm the one who needs the doctor because I seriously think I'm going crazy.’
      • ‘We didn't seriously suggest Benjamin could win did we?’
      • ‘Are these same people seriously suggesting that we renounce the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as well?’
      • ‘Can anyone seriously believe that when the investigations began to happen, nobody gave the operatives a heads-up?’
      • ‘For the first time in a decade, the Braves seriously must be wondering whether they still are the best team in the N.L. East.’
      • ‘I do not know of any member in this House - young or old - who honestly seriously believed that.’
      • ‘I'm not offended, just a little surprised that anyone could seriously think there was a connection based on seeing some people at a show.’
      • ‘More substantively, does he seriously maintain that genes indicate only the effects of selection?’
      • ‘Ken suggested, seriously, that prisoners all be kept in solitary confinement.’
      • ‘I have such a headache and I seriously would not be surprised if I spontaneously combusted or something right about now.’
      • ‘No one can seriously suggest that the military isn't spending enough money.’
      really, actually, honestly
      really?, is that so? is that a fact? you're joking! well i never, well i never did, go on, you don't say
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    2. 2.2sentence adverb Used to add sincerity to a statement that is to follow, especially after a facetious exchange of remarks.
      ‘seriously though, shortcuts rarely work’
      • ‘Seriously though I think she has a point.’
      • ‘But seriously though, I think I'll be able to update sooner since my work load is cutting down.’
      • ‘Seriously though, I hope you're having a better day!’
      • ‘No seriously though, now that I noticed it I can't help but wonder why this is.’
      • ‘Ok, so we're being a little facetious but seriously: nearly three hundred quid to see her at one of the worst venues in the city?’
      • ‘Though seriously, who gets a domain name without the "www"?’
      • ‘In the end my story said nothing about their plight - though seriously what hasn't already been said?’
      • ‘Well seriously though we are well into what we are doing, the music and the politics.’
      • ‘Nah, seriously though, the forum really isn't worth the trouble.’
      • ‘That's a horrific thing to contemplate, seriously it is.’
      • ‘I have been a fan for 20 years, and seriously, I am questioning whether I will still be watching after tonight.’
      • ‘It got so much bad publicity but seriously, without the movie it was an amazing album on its own.’
      • ‘But seriously though, I speak to you today as someone with experience in writing for the daily print media and as an author.’
      joking apart, joking aside, to be serious, honestly, without joking, no joking, truthfully, truly, i mean it
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    3. 2.3informal Used to indicate surprise at what someone has said and to check whether they really meant it.
      ‘“I'm dying to know.” “Seriously?” “Of course.”’
  • 3To a degree that is significant or worrying because of possible danger or risk.

    ‘the amount of fat you eat can seriously affect your health’
    as submodifier ‘three men are seriously ill in the hospital’
    • ‘The lorry driver also was injured, though not seriously.’
    • ‘This manner of anti-social behaviour seriously impacts on the quality of life for local residents who should now be able to enjoy a more peaceful home environment.’
    • ‘It's one of the stupid reasons I don't go to hospitals unless I'm seriously ill.’
    • ‘The widely held belief that European levels of air pollution might seriously affect human health has been hard to verify.’
    • ‘None of the three boys was thought to be seriously hurt, although they were all taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital for checks.’
    • ‘The successfully treated seriously ill are also affected by these service inadequacies.’
    • ‘There will also be a network of local care hospitals supported by a critical care hospital for seriously ill patients.’
    • ‘If the nail appears to be seriously infected see your doctor.’
    • ‘Consumers can become seriously ill if they eat an egg that is not fully cooked and contaminated with salmonella.’
    • ‘No one knows how many such doctors there are, but let us assume that around 3% of doctors are seriously deficient.’
    • ‘Only one crewman was seriously injured, doctors said, adding that he may lose his eyesight.’
    • ‘None of the seriously injured were thought to have been travelling in the other three vehicles involved, although one of the cars was severely damaged.’
    • ‘The new hospital will concentrate on very seriously ill children and specialist cases.’
    • ‘Your child is seriously hurt, but one doctor is there who can save your child.’
    • ‘The South East was most seriously affected but none of the train operators there reported significant delays either.’
    • ‘The Israelis fired at the Palestinians, wounding nine, three seriously, doctors said.’
    • ‘Her badly scarred face seriously affects her speech and she worries for her future as a potential wife.’
    • ‘People driving within the legal limit can be really incapacitated and have their driving seriously impaired, especially at lunchtime.’
    • ‘The first is to identify seriously underperforming doctors.’
    • ‘Some of them almost begged me not to write about this subject, advising me that this could seriously affect my health and safety.’
    severely, gravely, badly, critically, acutely, sorely, grievously, desperately, alarmingly, dangerously, perilously
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  • 4informal as submodifier Very.

    ‘he was seriously rich’
    ‘I drove to the station in a seriously bad mood’
    • ‘I really hope I get to… it's a scary prospect, but it could be seriously amazing.’
    • ‘He plots it with a series of crazy twists and sequences, word play and jugglery, and some seriously funny macabre humour.’
    • ‘If you're afraid that Usher has traded in all of his heavy guitar, you would be seriously wrong though.’
    • ‘But coming from someone with mad staring eyes, and who writes like Job in a seriously bad mood, this is all a bit hypocritical.’
    • ‘The red and pink prints are seriously cool, if I do say so myself.’
    • ‘The dog tried to do some seriously extreme bouncing.’
    • ‘It is, though, seriously overwritten, with every point made in triplicate.’
    • ‘I am seriously bummed, though, that she didn't come after all.’
    extremely, very, really, dreadfully, terribly, awfully, fearfully, incredibly, amazingly, exceptionally, exceedingly, immensely, uncommonly, remarkably, extraordinarily
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  • take someone/something seriously

    • Regard someone or something as important and worthy of attention.

      • ‘This is a very important statement and I hope he takes it seriously.’
      • ‘If you want to make anybody take you seriously, you'll have to pay attention to details like that.’
      • ‘They must gain the confidence of all members of the House, and that is why it is important that the commission takes the matter seriously.’
      • ‘Whatever its background, it is important to take hallucinations seriously and not to challenge the patients reality during the crisis situation, especially in the initial phase of treatment.’
      • ‘Even more important, they seem to be taking the environment seriously, as Labour traditionally never has.’
      • ‘That's why it is important to take them seriously, especially if they have depression or another mental disorder or are intoxicated or behaving impulsively.’
      • ‘Whatever suggestions they make, it is important you take them seriously.’
      • ‘This is an important study and the Government is taking it seriously.’
      • ‘As a unionist, he explains, it was important to take Scotland seriously in order to ensure it did not slip away into independence.’
      • ‘Because age related memory change may signal treatable medical conditions, it is important to take any complaint seriously.’