a) In an incidental manner; not of central or critical importance.

The book discussed the subject, but only incidentally.

b) By chance; in an unplanned way.

Incidentally, did you hear anything new from your brother yesterday?

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  • incidentally — is spelt this way and not (as the pronunciation in rapid speech might suggest) incidently. Its usual role is as a sentence adverb marking a new stage in speech (or sometimes writing) and it does not always carry its full weight of meaning ‘as an… …   Modern English usage

  • incidentally — (adv.) 1520s, by the way, casually; see INCIDENTAL (Cf. incidental) + LY (Cf. ly) (2). Sense of as a new but related point attested by 1925 …   Etymology dictionary

  • incidentally — [adv] by chance accidentally, as a by product, as side effect, by the bye*, by the way, casually, fortuitously, in passing, in related manner, not by design, obiter, parenthetically, remotely, subordinately, unexpectedly; concept 544 Ant.… …   New thesaurus

  • incidentally — ► ADVERB 1) by the way. 2) in an incidental manner …   English terms dictionary

  • incidentally — [in΄sə dent′ l ē, in΄sədent′lē] adv. 1. in an incidental manner; as something less important but associated 2. as a new but related point; by the way …   English World dictionary

  • incidentally — [[t]ɪ̱nsɪde̱ntli[/t]] 1) ADV: ADV with cl You use incidentally to introduce a point which is not directly relevant to what you are saying, often a question or extra information that you have just thought of. I didn t ask you to come. Incidentally …   English dictionary

  • incidentally — in|ci|den|tal|ly S3 [ˌınsıˈdentəli] adv 1.) [sentence adverb] used to add more information to what you have just said, or to introduce a new subject that you have just thought of = ↑by the way ▪ Incidentally, where were you born? ▪ The wine,… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • incidentally — in|ci|den|tal|ly [ ,ınsı dentli ] adverb * 1. ) used for adding related but less important information to what has just been said, or for suddenly introducing a new subject: His name, incidentally, was misspelled in the credits of the first two… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • incidentally */ — UK [ˌɪnsɪˈdent(ə)lɪ] / US adverb 1) used for adding related but less important information to what has just been said, or for suddenly introducing a new subject His name, incidentally, was misspelt in the credits of the first two Star Wars movies …   English dictionary

  • incidentally — adverb Date: 1665 1. in an incidental manner ; not intentionally < the arrant nonsense of some of his statements is incidentally hilarious John Lahr > 2. by way of interjection or digression ; by the way < fortunate in having a good teacher…… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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