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[ih-fek-choo-uh l] /ɪˈfɛk tʃu əl/
producing or capable of producing an intended effect; adequate.
valid or binding, as an agreement or document.
Origin of effectual
late Middle English
1350-1400; Middle English effectuel (< AF), late Middle English effectual < Medieval Latin effectuālis, equivalent to Latin effectu-, stem of effectus effect + -ālis -al1
Related forms
effectually, adverb
effectualness, effectuality, noun
preeffectual, adjective
preeffectually, adverb
1. See effective. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for effectually
Contemporary Examples
  • An under-valued Chinese currency bars American products and services as effectually as a tariff barrier.

    Tough on China David Frum May 23, 2012
Historical Examples
  • It blew ennui away as effectually as a storm whirls away a leaf.

    The Imitator Percival Pollard
  • I fancy it has been concealed so effectually that it is not as deep as you imagined.

  • In no other way can that duty be so effectually performed as by renominating and re-electing the old ticket.

  • And he effectually did succeed in making him understand he was serious.

    Cleo The Magnificent Louis Zangwill
  • What they promise only, Horace has effectually performed: yet I contradict not the proposition which I formerly advanced.

  • It effectually deterred others from confiding in the English.

    King Philip John S. C. (John Stevens Cabot) Abbott
  • Time and damp had effectually corroded the iron chambers of the lock, so that it afforded little resistance.

    The Purcell Papers Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
  • The uncovered vastness imprisoned him as effectually as a wall.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • These could not fail to pin the tongue, and effectually silence the noisiest brawler.

    Bygone Punishments William Andrews
British Dictionary definitions for effectually


with the intended effect; thoroughly
to all practical purposes; in effect


capable of or successful in producing an intended result; effective
(of documents, agreements, etc) having legal force
Derived Forms
effectuality, effectualness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for effectually



late 14c., Old French effectuel, from Late Latin effectualis, from Latin effectus "accomplishment, performance" (see effect (n.)). Used properly of actions (not agents) and with a sense "having the effect aimed at." Related: Effectually; effectuality.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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