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[prak-tik-lee] /ˈpræk tɪk li/
in effect; virtually:
It is practically useless to protest.
in a practical manner:
to think practically.
from a practical point of view:
Practically speaking, the plan is not very promising.
almost; nearly:
Their provisions were practically gone.
Origin of practically
First recorded in 1615-25; practical + -ly
Usage note
A few usage guides object to the use of practically in the senses “in effect, virtually” and “almost, nearly.” Both uses, however, are well established and standard in all varieties of speech and writing. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for practically
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • If you think it is I'll tell you something that isn't: Avice practically refused him.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • That is, theoretically we may ascribe them to God, but practically we dissociate Him from them.

  • practically that is all we ever get from group-impulse—an act of courtesy.

  • When the fire was vanquished, it had practically completed its work of destruction.

  • Its texture is practically the same as that of the other cake.

    Woman's Institute Library of Cookery, Vol. 4 Woman's Institute of Domestic Arts and Sciences
British Dictionary definitions for practically


/ˈpræktɪkəlɪ; -klɪ/
virtually; almost: it has rained practically every day
in actuality rather than in theory: what can we do practically to help?
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 practically

1620s, "in a practical manner," from practical + -ly (2). Meaning "for practical purposes, as good as" is from 1748; loosened sense of "almost" is from 1869.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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