Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

widely

adverb
     
wide‧ly W2
1 in a lot of different places or by a lot of people:
Organic food is now widely available.
an author who had travelled widely in the Far East
a widely used method
These laws were widely regarded as too strict.
This view was not widely held.
2 to a large degree - used when talking about differences:
The quality of the applicants varies widely.
3

widely read

a) read by a lot of people:
a widely read magazine
b) having read many different books

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