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90s Slang You Should Know


[puhb-lik-lee] /ˈpʌb lɪk li/
in a public or open manner or place.
by the public.
in the name of the community.
by public action or consent.
Origin of publicly
First recorded in 1925-30; public + -ly Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for publicly
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Conjectures were made as to who the author might be; Mendelssohn's name was publicly mentioned.

  • They then ordered her "to abjure" publicly the various things of which she was accused.

    The Story of Rouen Sir Theodore Andrea Cook
  • Miss Dilldall publicly boasted of the fact that she had smoked a cigarette in a restaurant in Soho!

    The Foolish Lovers St. John G. Ervine
  • In the year 1804 six women were publicly flogged at Gloucester for this offence.

    The History of London Walter Besant
  • We learned afterward that Mrs. F., who made the tour of the islands last summer, had publicly mentioned Harry.

British Dictionary definitions for publicly


in a public manner; without concealment; openly
in the name or with the consent of the public
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 publicly

1560s, "in public," from public (adj.) + -ly (2). From 1580s as "by the public." Variant publically is attested from 1812, perhaps based on the fact that publicly is the only exception in this class of words, which as a rule are spelled -ically though often they are pronounced otherwise.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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