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HomeEducationWord of the Day: perfunctorily Obtain US

Word of the Day: perfunctorily Obtain US

The word perfunctorily has appeared in seven articles on NYTimes.com in the past year, including on May 19 in “How a Psychologist Confronted Her Own Bipolar Disorder” by Kay Redfield Jamison:

The most important thing my psychiatrist did during that first meeting was give me hope that I would get better. My illness was treatable. He thought it very likely that I would respond well to lithium and that psychotherapy would help. He would be there with me. I could do it.

All seemed futile, but his belief that I would get well, and stay well, continued throughout my treatment. His belief was not naïve, nor did he perfunctorily offer hope; his advice was clinically informed and seemed unassailable. He acted on the belief that the power of faith is one that a good doctor uses as a matter of course. And he used it well.

Can you correctly use the word perfunctorily in a sentence?

Based on the definition and example provided, write a sentence using today’s Word of the Day and share it as a comment on this article. It is most important that your sentence makes sense and demonstrates that you understand the word’s definition, but we also encourage you to be creative and have fun.

Then, read some of the other sentences students have submitted and use the “Recommend” button to vote for two original sentences that stand out to you.

If you want a better idea of how perfunctorily can be used in a sentence, read these usage examples on Vocabulary.com.


Students ages 13 and older in the United States and the United Kingdom, and 16 and older elsewhere, can comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff.

The Word of the Day is provided by Vocabulary.com. Learn more and see usage examples across a range of subjects in the Vocabulary.com Dictionary. See every Word of the Day in this column.

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