- without covering or disguise; plainly: stating the unpleasant facts barely
- only just; no more than; scarcely: barely enough to eat
- meagerly; scantily: a barely furnished room
The definition of barely is something that is just enough, with nothing left over.
If you have five dollars and lunch costs five dollars that is an example that you can barely pay for lunch.
- By a very little; hardly: could barely see the road in the fog.
- In a scanty manner; sparsely: a barely furnished room.
- (degree) By a small margin.
- (degree) Almost not at all.
- The plane is so far away now I can barely see it.
- Yes, it is barely visible.
- (archaic) merely.
- Compare You can find barely ever used items on eBay. with You can almost never find used items on eBay.
bare + -ly
- He barely talked to me.
- Her mouth felt dry and her voice was barely a whisper.
- Yancey was barely breathing hard.
- Barely a decade earlier, Cleveland, also a Democrat, had said essentially, "Look, the government shouldn't be helping the poor Texans; that's the role of charity."
- They barely knew each other.