AskDefine | Define cleanly

Dictionary Definition

cleanly adj : habitually clean; "cleanly in their persons and habitations" adv
1 in an adroit manner; "he bounced it cleanly off the wall" [syn: flawlessly]
2 without distortion; "she played the piano accompaniment cleanly" [also: cleanliest, cleanlier]

User Contributed Dictionary



clean + -ly


  • Adjective:
    • (US) IPA: /ˈklɛnli/
  • Adverb:
    • (US) IPA: /ˈkliːnli/


  1. being habitually clean, practising good hygiene
    • 1653: Izaak Walton, The Compleat Angler - I'll now lead you to an honest ale-house, where we shall find a cleanly room, lavender in the windows, and twenty ballads stuck about the wall.

Derived terms



being habitually clean


  1. in a clean way
    Despite travelling for the last week, she was cleanly dressed.
  2. not causing a mess or unnecessary damage
    We agreed to break off our relationship cleanly.
    Fortunately, the bullet passed cleanly through your shoulder.


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