Etymology
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lowly (adv.)

c. 1300, "humbly, in a modest manner," from low (adj.) + -ly (2).

lowly (adj.)

late 14c., "humble in feeling, not proud," from low (adj.) + -ly (1). Related: Lowlily.

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Definitions of lowly

lowly (adj.)
inferior in rank or status;
a lowly corporal
Synonyms: junior-grade / lower-ranking / petty / secondary / subaltern
lowly (adj.)
low or inferior in station or quality;
a lowly parish priest
Synonyms: humble / low / modest / small
lowly (adj.)
used of unskilled work (especially domestic work);
Synonyms: humble / menial
lowly (adj.)
of low birth or station (`base' is archaic in this sense);
of humble (or lowly) birth
Synonyms: base / baseborn / humble
From wordnet.princeton.edu