really Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “really” in the English Dictionary

"really" in British English

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reallyadverb

uk   /ˈrɪə.li/  us   /ˈriː.ə-/
  • really adverb (NOT IMAGINARY)

B1 in ​fact: He isn't really ​angry - he's just ​pretending. You don't really ​expect them to ​refuse, do you?A2 used to say that something is ​certain: Thank you, but I really couldn't ​eat another thing. He's really going to do it this ​time.

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  • really adverb (VERY)

A1 very or very much: She's really ​nice. This ​room is really ​hot. That's really ​interesting. It's a really ​difficultdecision. "Did you like it? Not really (= no)."

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reallyexclamation

uk   /ˈrɪə.li/  us   /ˈriː.ə-/
A2 used to ​expressinterest, ​surprise, or ​anger: "I'm getting ​married to Fred." "Really? When?" "She's ​promised to ​shave her ​head for ​charity." "Really? Do you ​think she'll do it?" "He hasn't ​brought the ​book back." "Oh, really! That's the second ​time I've ​asked him!"

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

"really" in American English

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reallyadverb [not gradable]

 us   /ˈri·ə·li, ˈri·li/
sincerely; ​truly: I’m really ​telling the ​truth this ​time. If she really ​cared about me, she would have called by now.
extremely: That was a really good ​movie. This ​room is really ​hot.
actually: What really ​happened that ​day? I just don’t ​know if we would really use it that much.

reallyexclamation

 us   /ˈri·ə·li, ˈri·li/
  • really exclamation (EXPRESSING SURPRISE)

used to ​expressinterest, ​surprise, or ​annoyance: "Debbie and I are getting ​married." "Really? When?" Really, Jen, you should have ​let me ​knowsooner.
(Definition of really from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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