9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[man-yoo-uh l] /ˈmæn yu əl/
done, operated, worked, etc., by the hand or hands rather than by an electrical or electronic device:
a manual gearshift.
involving or using human effort, skill, power, energy, etc.; physical:
manual labor.
of or relating to the hand or hands:
manual deformities.
of the nature of a manual or handbook:
manual instructions.
a small book, especially one giving information or instructions:
a manual of mathematical tables.
a nonelectric or nonelectronic typewriter; a typewriter whose keys and carriage may be powered solely by the typist's hands.
Military. the prescribed drill in handling a rifle:
the manual of arms.
Music. a keyboard, especially one of several belonging to a pipe organ.
Automotive. manual transmission.
Origin of manual
late Middle English
1375-1425; < Latin manuālis (adj.), manuāle (noun) (something) that can be held in the hand (manu(s) hand + -ālis, -āle -al1, -al2); replacing late Middle English manuel < Middle French < Latin, as above
Related forms
manually, adverb
nonmanual, adjective
nonmanually, adverb
unmanual, adjective
unmanually, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for manually
  • To maximize the effect, the team has installed panoramic light fixtures that can be manually focused.
  • Automatic focus in low light settings can be tricky, so focus manually and use a high f-stop to get good depth of field.
  • There is no option to share sources publicly, and you have to manually add users to share groups by email address.
  • Your only option is to painstakingly scroll through your favorites and extract any relevant information from them manually.
  • The user had to download it via computer, and run the update manually.
  • Participants were instructed to look down the hill and judge, both visually and manually, its grade.
  • manually milked cows seldom get milked more than three times a day, and it is expensive to staff round the clock milking.
  • So you decide to make the perfect shuffle by manually re-arranging the cards to make sure none of the original order remains.
  • Those that manage to get through will be manually unapproved.
  • In one embodiment, a motor is coupled to the tuning linkage such that an operator can manually adjust the tuning via a motor.
British Dictionary definitions for manually


of or relating to a hand or hands
operated or done by hand: manual controls
physical, as opposed to mental or mechanical: manual labour
by human labour rather than automatic or computer-aided means
of, relating to, or resembling a manual
a book, esp of instructions or information: a car manual
(music) one of the keyboards played by hand on an organ
(military) the prescribed drill with small arms
Derived Forms
manually, adverb
Word Origin
C15: via Old French from Latin manuālis, from manus hand
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 manually

late 15c., from manual (adj.) + -ly (2).



c.1400, from Latin manualis "of or belonging to the hand; that can be thrown by hand," from manus "hand, strength, power over; armed force; handwriting," from PIE *man- (2) "hand" (cf. Old Norse mund "hand," Old English mund "hand, protection, guardian," German Vormund "guardian," Greek mane "hand").


early 15c., "service book used by a priest," from Old French manuel "handbook" (also "plow-handle"), from Late Latin manuale "case or cover of a book, handbook," noun use of neuter of Latin manualis (see manual (adj.)). Meaning "a concise handbook" of any sort is from 1530s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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