January 27, 2007


lim·ber·ly adv. in a limber manner [limber + -ly]

Bloggin John Comments:
Limberly does not come across as being exotic or arcane; it seems like an everyday word. But if your experience echos mine, we rarely hear limberly in our daily lives--much less in our every day lives. I agree with J. N. Hook that for "some reason limberly appears much less often than its companion, the adjective limber, yet it should be equally useful: 'Although he's in his fifties, he plays hardball vigorously and limberly'." [2]

Webster's Third Unabridged Dictionary is one of the rare lexicons to record that the adverb limberly exists and is worthy of definition. I will grant you that most readers of W3 do not really need a definition for limberly, for we intuit that such an adverb probably exists and probably means "in a limber manner." It's just inexplicably odd that such a comely, useful word is so infrequently invited into our Big Party of Words.

Sample sentence:
"I was impressed at how limberly and politely David Gregory responded to Tony Snow's accusation that Gregory had broken White House Press Room protocol by asking a question with an apparent partisan twist." --B'n' J'

What limberly needs:
Publicity! Maybe if there were a hit television sit-com about a circus acrobat named "Limberly Betty". . . .

[1] Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged. Merriam-Webster, 2002. (28 Jan. 2007) .

[2] Hook, J. N. The Grand Pandrum. New York: McMillan, 1991, 250.