Líterally. adv. [from literal.]
- According to the primitive import of words; not figuratively.
That a man and his wife are one flesh, I can comprehend the meaning of; yet literally taken, it is a thing impossible. Swift.
- With close adherence to words.
Endeavouring to turn his Nisus and Euryalus as close as I was able, I have performed that episode too literally; that giving more scope to Mezentius and Lausus, that version, which has more of the majesty of Virgil, has less of his conciseness. Dryden.
So wild and ungovernable a poet cannot be translated literally; his genius is too strong to bear a chain. Dryden.