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I post on Monday with an occasional random blog thrown in for good measure. I do my best to answer all comments via email and visit around on the days I post.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Alternatives for Chiefly

Before you peruse today's list of alternatives, I'd like to thank Kelly Polark for letting Anansi hang out at her place!

Alternatives is a recurring post in which I give synonyms for an over used word. Click on the tab above for a "complete" list of over used words.

Today's word is:

When I first started putting this list together I didn't think there were going to be as many synonyms as there are. I realize most of them end in the dreaded "ly", BUT, at least you now have a bit of variety which, for the most part, isn't a bad thing.

Depending on how you use it, this list may come in handy for finding another way to say the same thing.

ab initio, above/above all, aborigine, about, ab ovo, a fortiori, all in all, all the more, all things considered, almost always, almost entirely, altogether, approximately, as a rule, as a whole, as an approximation, as per usual, as things go, as usual, at first, at large, at the start

basically, before everything, better, broadly, broadly speaking, by and large

capitally, centrally, commandingly, commonly, consummately, customarily


effectually, eminently, especially, essentially, even/evenso

first, first and foremost, first of all, first thing, firstly, for the most part, frequently, from the beginning

generally, generally speaking


in chief, incompletely, indeed, in general, initially, in particular, in the beginning, in the first place, in the main

largely, lordly

mainly, masterly, maximally, more or less, more than ever, most/mostly, most often, much

naturally, near/nearly, never so, next to, nigh, no end, normally, normatively

on balance, on the whole, ordinarily, originally, overall

paramountly, partially, particularly, partly, peculiarly, plus or minus, practically, predominantly, prescriptively, prevailingly, primarily, primo, principally,

rather, regally, regularly, roughly/roughly speaking, routinely

signally, some/somewhat, sovereignly, speaking generally, still more, substantially, superiorly, substantially, supremely

to be expected, typically


virtually/virtually all,



In New Zealand there is a true story of how a CHIEFLY sword became a symbol of peace.

Chiefly isn't a word I use much. How about you? I'm more apt to use, indeed.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Not a word I use, but I do use a couple of the alternatives. (Although I try not to use those darn 'LY' words.)

Natalie Aguirre said...

I don't use it much either. Try not to use many ly words but I do use some.

Liza said...

Not sure I've ever used the word. If I did, it might only be in a sentence such as, "He's acting mighty chiefly." :)

Misha Gericke said...

I tend to use "mainly". Chiefly is a good alternative for that, though. ;-)

Rena Jones said...

Chiefly -- I like that one. We used to have a collie named Chiefy. :)

Marcia said...

I enjoy how I can read a list like this and think of various people. For example, "by and large" was my dad's phrase.

Come to think of it, your lists are goldmines for finding each character's particular verbal tics.

Medeia Sharif said...

I overuse basically and usually, so this was good to see.

DMS said...

I don't use chiefly, but I do use others on the list. I try to stay away from the ly words, but they do pop up! :)

Crystal Collier said...

It's note a huge word in my vocabulary, but that's probably because of the time frame I've been writing for a while. It's not a word that would be used much.

What are my problem words? I don't even know any more. My CP's and editor do though. =)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Mainly is the first word that comes to mind for that one.

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