Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Language: Old Norse
Origin: glikligr, from glikr 'like'

likely

1 adjective
     
like‧ly1 S1 W1 comparative likelier, superlative likeliest
1 something that is likely will probably happen or is probably true [≠ unlikely]:
Snow showers are likely tomorrow.
likely outcome/effects/consequences etc
What are the likely effects of the law going to be?
the most likely cause of the problem
likely to do/be something
Children who live in the country's rural areas are very likely to be poor.
more/less/most/least likely
Young drivers are far more likely to have accidents than older drivers.
It is more than likely (=almost certain) the votes will have to be counted again.
It could have been an accident, but that was hardly likely (=not very likely).
He could offer no likely explanation when I asked him.
2 [only before noun] suitable for a particular purpose:
the three most likely candidates for president
One likely source of energy is windpower.
3

a likely story

spoken used to tell someone you do not believe what they have just said

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