Meaning of “properly” in the English Dictionary

"properly" in British English

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properlyadverb

uk /ˈprɒp.əl.i/ us /ˈprɑː.pɚ.li/

properly adverb (CORRECTLY)

correctly, or in a satisfactory way:

It's still not working properly.
I'm not properly dressed for this kind of weather.
I think you should take it somewhere to have it repaired properly.
Come on, Evie, speak properly - you're not a baby any more!

More examples

  • We need to ensure that handwriting is properly taught in our primary schools.
  • You obviously didn't read the instructions properly.
  • It takes about five minutes to iron a shirt properly.
  • The doctors are doing all that they can, but she's still not breathing properly.
  • If you get bitten by a dog, you have to make sure the wound is properly cleaned, or an infection could set in.

(Definition of “properly” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"properly" in American English

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properlyadverb

us /ˈprɑp·ər·li/

properly adverb (SUITABLY)

in a way that is right for a particular situation; suitably:

If the plants are tended properly, they’ll thrive in this climate.

properly adverb (CORRECTLY)

in a way that is considered to be correct; correctly:

To learn to speak a language properly, you have to live in the country where that language is spoken.

properly adverb (ACCEPTABLY)

in a way that follows socially acceptable standards:

I expect you to behave properly at the restaurant.

(Definition of “properly” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)