Don’t you lie awake nights wondering how many words end with “-ly” that are NOT adverbs?
Me, too!! Here’ s my list from last night; add your own, please! Note that almost all of mine are adjectives, and also that most are adjectives that you’d rather not be! I wonder why that is. A good language historian, like John McWhorter, could tell us, i’m sure. But figuring out how to get in touch with John McWhorter … that’s a job for another night.
Anyway, in alphabetical order, here are the adjectives i’ve thought of so far: bristly, burly, comely, courtly, cowardly (how come there are no “heroly” men?), deadly, early (i know this is ALSO an adverb, but i decided to admit such words to this list because it seemed like the gentlemanly thing to do), friendly, frilly, gentlemanly, ghastly, ghostly, giggly, girly, gnarly, gravelly, grisly, gristly, heavenly, hilly, holy, homely, jolly, jowly, kindly, knightly, lively, lovely, lowly, manly, masterly, matronly, mealy, melancholy, neighborly, niggardly, oily, pebbly, pimply, portly, prickly, princely, roly-poly, scraggly, seemly, shapely, sickly, silly, slovenly, sly, smelly, spindly, squiggly, squirrelly, studly (should we allow that one?), surly, timely, treacly, ugly, ungainly (Where are all the “gainly” people? We hardly ever hear about them), unseemly, untimely, womanly, and woolly. (To spare readers unnecessary torture, i deliberately omitted all words like easterly, westerly, northerly, north-northwesterly, southeasterly, etc. Likewise for daily, hourly, monthly, yearly, biweekly, semimonthly, etc.)
And finally, the only verbs i could think of last night: dally, fly*, ply, rally, sally and sully.
Come on, everyone! Send me your non-adverb “-ly” words! If we get a big enough list, maybe we can send it to the Guinness Book of Records and set the record for … something-or-other! (And now, sleep peacefully, knowing that i’ll be up all night trying to think of a good category for such an effort.)