9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[fawr-muh-lee] /ˈfɔr mə li/
in a formal manner:
The store was formally opened on Tuesday.
as regards form; in form:
It may be formally correct, but it is substantively wrong.
Origin of formally
1350-1400; Middle English. See formal1, -ly
Can be confused
formally, formerly. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for formally
  • Now the south will have to focus on the intricate process of formally disentangling itself from the north.
  • Show that you're a hipster through your accessories or your shoes, but dress formally.
  • Though formally homeless, few of those who lack settled abodes sleep on the streets, nor do many live in dingy hotels or hostels.
  • Unless formally hedged, plants require little pruning.
  • Elderly professors should be addressed formally at first encounter.
  • In the two weeks after the bombing, the police detained several hundred people for questioning and formally arrested six of them.
  • The officials ruled that the artifacts would remain in the cave until the government formally registered the site.
  • The game-ranch acreage is more than double the amount of land formally protected as national and provincial parkland.
  • The pair is expected to be formally sentenced in several months.
  • There wasn't anything explicit in the letter about formally accepting the terminal year.
Word Origin and History for formally

c.1400, "in good form," from formal + -ly (2). Meaning "in prescribed or customary form" is from 1560s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for formally

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for formally

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with formally