English version


From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishunlikelyun‧like‧ly /ʌnˈlaɪkli/ ●●● S3 W2 adjective  1 PROBABLY#not likely to happen Donna might be able to come tomorrow, but it’s very unlikely.unlikely to do something The weather is unlikely to improve over the next few days.it is unlikely (that) It’s unlikely that the thieves will be caught.in the unlikely event of something (=if something which is unlikely happens) In the unlikely event of a fire, passengers should move to the top deck.2 RELATIONSHIPan unlikely place, person, or thing is strange and not what you would expect The birds had nested in some unlikely places. The quiet village of Brockhampton was an unlikely setting for such a crime.3 BELIEVE#not likely to be true an unlikely storyCOLLOCATIONSadverbshighly/most/very unlikelyIt’s highly unlikely that he’ll survive.extremely unlikelyThe government is extremely unlikely to change its policy.rather/pretty/quite/fairly unlikelyI may have thrown it away by mistake, but that’s pretty unlikely.increasingly unlikely (=more and more unlikely as time passes)It looks increasingly unlikely that the Bank of England will cut interest rates.nounsan unlikely possibility/prospectThe most unlikely possibility was that she might resign.an unlikely scenario/occurrenceThey should build a new road, but that’s an unlikely scenario.an unlikely alliance/coalitionOnce he resigned as president, the unlikely coalition of former enemies fell apart. phrasesin the unlikely event of something (=if something which is unlikely happens)In the unlikely event of an accident, the system will automatically shut down.
Examples from the Corpus
unlikelyShe might come with us, but it's fairly unlikely.Anthony eventually tracks him down and the unlikely chums share a drink or two too many.Students invent all sorts of unlikely explanations as to why they can't do their homework.Ex-journo turned editor, his recent tome Gothic Rock enjoyed the unlikely publishing coup of having no competition.That sounds a pretty unlikely story to me!Waterstone's was an unlikely success story of the 80s Thatcherite boom.It is unlikely that anyone saw the attack.It's highly unlikely that Burton will be the party's nominee.I think it's unlikely that the police had anything to do with it.But they are unlikely to be able to save more than a dozen or so seats.A small amount of the drug is unlikely to have any harmful effects.A large proportion of our researchers are therefore unlikely to make major contributions to the literature of their research area.It is unlikely to put them out.It will be gearing up this year, but is unlikely to repeat the 1991 rights issue.it is unlikely (that)And yet, for all the sound and fury, it is unlikely Mr Ashcroft will be rejected by the Senate.Zeffiro cautions that it is unlikely that all dyslexics have exactly the same underlying brain problems.With an established, respected management company it is unlikely that any band would secure an agreement for less than five years.For it is unlikely that many Koi on the market today are without some Doitsu genes.Therefore, it is unlikely that reflux of acid or gas had occurred just before the onset of the contractile activity.Indeed, as a general problem, it is unlikely that two divisions will arrive amicably at a suitable transfer price.But where there is energy there is life, so it is unlikely that you will be jobless or unsuccessful for long.If such machinations are seldom heard of in this period it is unlikely to be because they were rare.
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