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English definition of “hardly”

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hardly

adverb [not gradable]  /ˈhɑrd·li/ us  

hardly adverb [not gradable] (ONLY JUST)

only just or almost not: Hardly a day passes that I don’t think about it. You’ve hardly eaten anything. Something is wrong with the phone – I can hardly hear you. I can hardly wait for your visit. We hardly ever see them anymore.

hardly adverb [not gradable] (CERTAINLY NOT)

certainly not: It’s hardly surprising that he was angry.
(Definition of hardly from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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