Meaning of “actually” - Learner’s Dictionary


adverb us uk /ˈæktʃuəli/
At first I thought she was unfriendly, but actually she is just shy.At last, I've found a pair of jeans that actually fit.It's unclear what actually happened that night.Unusually for me, I actually couldn't finish my meal.There was a lot of confusion about what was actually going on.

A2 used when you are saying what is the truth of a situation:

He didn't actually say anything important.
So what actually happened?

B1 used when you are saying something surprising:

She sounds English but she's actually Spanish.
Did you actually meet the president?

B2 used when you are disagreeing with someone or saying no to a request:

"You didn't tell me." "Actually, I did."
"Do you mind if I smoke?" "Actually, I'd rather you didn't."

(Definition of “actually” from the Cambridge Learner’s Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)