barely - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    used for saying that something almost does not happen or exist, or is almost not possible

    He was so dizzy he could barely stand.

    The roads were barely wide enough for two cars to pass.

    There was barely a scratch on his car, but mine was wrecked.

    a barely audible whisper

    barely able to do something:

    He was barely able to see the road in the fog.

  2. 2
    used for emphasizing that something happened only a very short time before something else

    He barely paused before jumping straight into the water.

    The thought had barely come to me before it was gone again.

  3. 3
    used for emphasizing how small an amount is

    He’s barely 12 years old.

    They had travelled barely a third of the way.