[ tahym-lee ]
/ ˈtaɪm li /

adjective, time·li·er, time·li·est.

occurring at a suitable time; seasonable; opportune; well-timed: a timely warning.
Archaic. early.


seasonably; opportunely.
Archaic. early or soon.

Nearby words

  1. timekeeping,
  2. timeless,
  3. timelessly,
  4. timeline,
  5. timeline bar,
  6. timeo danaos et dona ferentes,
  7. timeous,
  8. timeously,
  9. timepass,
  10. timepiece

Origin of timely

before 1000; Middle English tim(e)liche, Old English tīmlīce (adv.). See time, -ly

Related formstime·li·ness, nounpre·time·li·ness, nounpre·time·ly, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for timely

British Dictionary definitions for timely


/ (ˈtaɪmlɪ) /

adjective, adverb -lier or -liest

at the right or an opportune or appropriate time
an archaic word for early
Derived Formstimeliness, noun

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 timely



late Old English, from time (n.). As an adjective meaning "occurring at a suitable time" it is attested from c.1200.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper