[sawr-lee, sohr-]


in a painful manner.
extremely; very: I was sorely tempted to report him.

Origin of sorely

before 900; Middle English sarely, soreli, Old English sārlīce; see sore, -ly Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sorely

Contemporary Examples of sorely

Historical Examples of sorely

  • We visited him at Winchester, and found him sorely old and with failing wits.

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • Sorely distressed, he walked back to his lodgings in Thirty-second Street.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Then she lay down herself on the sofa beside her bed, sorely exhausted.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Edward Gilder did none of these things, though his heart was sorely wounded.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Magnificent was the day, indeed, and sorely did La Malne tempt us to a halt.

    The Roof of France

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

British Dictionary definitions for sorely



painfully or grievouslysorely wounded
pressingly or greatlyto be sorely taxed; he will be sorely missed
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 sorely

Old English sarlice "grievously, mournfully, bitterly, painfully;" see sore (adj.) + -ly (2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper