Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Chief; principal; capital; (of sins) deadly.
  • adj. Heady; violent; impetuous.
  • adv. In a headly manner; impetuously; precipitately; headily.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Principal; capital.
  • [In this sense found only in Shakspere, in the following passage in the folio of 1623, where it is prob. a misprint for heady, as in all other editions.] Same as heady, 3.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English hedly, havedlich, from Old English hēafodlīċ ("at the top, principal, capital, deadly"), equivalent to head +‎ -ly.

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