• synonyms


[pawrt-lee, pohrt-]
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adjective, port·li·er, port·li·est.
  1. rather heavy or fat; stout; corpulent.
  2. Archaic. stately, dignified, or imposing.
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Origin of portly

1520–30; port5 (noun) + -ly
Related formsport·li·ness, nounun·port·ly, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for portly

overweight, beefy, burly, corpulent, stout, ample, broad, fleshy, heavy, hefty, husky, large, obese, plump, rotund, avoirdupois

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Contemporary Examples of portly

Historical Examples of portly

British Dictionary definitions for portly


adjective -lier or -liest
  1. stout or corpulent
  2. archaic stately; impressive
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Derived Formsportliness, noun

Word Origin for portly

C16: from port 5 (in the sense: deportment, bearing)
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 portly


early 15c., "stately, dignified," from port (n.3) "bearing, carriage" + -ly (1). Meaning "stout" is first recorded 1590s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper