Directly means "without changing direction." When you head directly for the food at a party, you walk straight to the snack table, without stopping to chat on the way.

The adverb directly is useful for talking about something you do in a precise, immediate way, without pausing or getting sidetracked. If you land "go to jail" when you're playing Monopoly, you have to go directly to jail, and if you arrive late at the airport, you'll want to run directly to your gate. In the 1500's, directly meant "in a straight line," from the Latin root word directus, "straight."

Definitions of directly

adv without deviation

“the path leads directly to the lake”
direct, straight

adv without anyone or anything intervening

“these two factors are directly related”
“he was directly responsible”
“measured the physical properties directly

adv without delay or hesitation; with no time intervening

adv in a forthright manner; candidly or frankly

“he didn't answer directly
flat, straight
not in a forthright manner

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.