• synonyms


See more synonyms for formerly on Thesaurus.com
  1. in time past; in an earlier period or age; previously: a custom formerly observed.
  2. Obsolete. in time just past; just now.
Show More

Origin of formerly

First recorded in 1580–90; former1 + -ly
Can be confusedformally formerly
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for formerly

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

British Dictionary definitions for formerly


  1. at or in a former time; in the past
  2. obsolete in the immediate past; just now
Show More
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

Word Origin and History for formerly


1580s, from former + -ly (2). A Middle English word for this was andersith "formerly, at former times" (early 14c.).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper