• synonyms


See more synonyms for simply on Thesaurus.com
  1. in a simple manner; clearly and easily.
  2. plainly; unaffectedly.
  3. sincerely; artlessly: to speak simply as a child.
  4. merely; only: It is simply a cold.
  5. unwisely; foolishly: If you behave simply toward him, you're bound to be betrayed.
  6. wholly; absolutely: simply irresistible.
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Origin of simply

First recorded in 1250–1300, simply is from the Middle English word simpleliche. See simple, -ly
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for simply

easily, quietly, commonly, openly, honestly, directly, naturally, purely, only, barely, solely, utterly, altogether, totally, wholly, really, but, just, candidly, frankly

Examples from the Web for simply

Contemporary Examples of simply

Historical Examples of simply

  • No questions were asked; no information given; they simply disappeared.

  • She simply lived by her wits, and perhaps by some want of that article in her male friends.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • Yet Hope had appealed to him so simply, had trusted him so nobly!


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • It was simply impossible to judge with any accuracy of the distance of the ship.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • But as I gather it, after you shot Bill Dozier you simply sat on your horse and waited.

British Dictionary definitions for simply


  1. in a simple manner
  2. merely; only
  3. absolutely; altogether; reallya simply wonderful holiday
  4. (sentence modifier) frankly; candidly
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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 simply


late 13c., simpleliche; see simple + -ly (2). Purely intensive sense is attested from 1580s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper