View synonyms for woefully


[ woh-fuh-lee ]


  1. in a sad or miserable way:

    More often than I care to remember, I’ve been stumped for suitable small talk and have ended up staring woefully into my drink.

  2. to a particularly regrettable or unfortunate degree:

    The treatments prescribed by this psychiatrist are at best woefully inadequate, and at worst, make the patients more disabled than when they started out.

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Other Words From

  • un·woe·ful·ly adverb

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Word History and Origins

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Example Sentences

The team tried to avoid face-to-face contact during the preseason by not tackling or blocking normally and holding all meetings virtually, but it was woefully unprepared in a 55-3 loss to BYU in the season opener.

In 2012, though, Koney’s first attempt at becoming a pineapple farmer “failed woefully,” he says, due to theft, unavailability of fertilizers and the lack of a reliable market for his produce, among other factors.

From Ozy

One need only look at laws and practices for hundreds of years to see how the nation continually struggles to live up to its ideals and promises written so eloquently on paper, yet so woefully unfulfilled in practice.

From Ozy

At the beginning of the pandemic the US had woefully small testing capacity.

The retirement plan for Our Lady of Fatima, which 2,700 past and current hospital employees were counting on, had been woefully underfunded since 2008.

The newly free country struggled to maintain order in the wake of independence, but it was woefully unprepared.

His last words, or so they say, were woefully self-indulgent: “Why me, Johnny Lazia, who has been the friend of everybody?”

The penniless Pieret announced his intentions of stealing more art from the woefully guarded Louvre to make more money.

That is woefully short of what ISIS needs, and they know it.

We Americans are so woefully unaware when it comes to the history, and the specifics.

In 1864 the railway was in a very bad condition, wretchedly run down, and woefully mismanaged.

The bag, too, began to seem woefully full, and her stomach correspondingly empty.

You imagine you have married a creature endowed with reason: you are woefully mistaken, my friend.

He knows the British dislike of boasting, and that the American and the Britisher are woefully trusting.

The papers seem to be woefully wrought up over the financial rating of Mr. Harry Lehr.


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[gal-uh-maw-free ]

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