[ sad-lee ]
/ ˈsæd li /
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in an unhappy, sorrowful, or regretful way; unfortunately; regrettably: Gun tracing is an attempt to answer the sadly common question of where the gun used in a crime came from.Sadly, the tourism and money brought in by the World Cup games won't benefit the people who need it most.
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Origin of sadly

sad + -ly
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What does sadly mean?

Sadly means in an unhappy, sorrowful, or regretful way, as in Whenever my dog looks at me sadly, I can’t help but cuddle him.

Sadly is frequently used to mean unfortunately, as in Sadly, he could not make the game today. This usage often gives a more emotional or sympathetic tone to a statement. It’s often used for disappointments, excuses, reports of loss, and any other scenario where something could be upsetting to the listener or reader.

Example: We report sadly that we were unable to reach our financial goals this quarter.

Where does sadly come from?

The first records of the term sadly come from the late 1300s. It combines the term sad, meaning “affected by unhappiness or grief,” and the suffix ly, which forms adverbs from adjectives, like gladly and secondly.

Another common sense of sadly is “in a shabby, tattered, or otherwise disheveled way.” For example, you might say a wilting plant looks sadly as it droops. Most of the time, though, sadly will be reserved for situations of disappointment or sorrow.

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What are some synonyms for sadly?

What are some words that share a root or word element with sadly

What are some words that often get used in discussing sadly?

How is sadly used in real life?

Sadly is often used to describe how someone feels about a statement they’re making.


Try using sadly!

Is sadly used correctly in the following sentence?

I looked sadly at the cake I had dropped on the floor, regretting that I wouldn’t get to eat it.

How to use sadly in a sentence