# Does "fairly" mean "relatively" or some level between them?

The lecturer is saying

Initially the gradient is positive and `fairly` constant, but for it drops to zero at the peak, it then becomes negative for a period before returning to zero.

Cambridge gives this explanation about `fairly`

more than average, but less than very

which seems not to be the case here.

assume the initial part is the time frame between the starting point, shown above, and somewhere shown below

Technically, in the initial part, the gradient (the slop of the orange line) is not a constant. but it could be viewed as a constant, when compared to the one shown below.

If the meaning "more than average" is taken, where is the average? So, it seems that "fairly" mean "relatively" in this case, is my understanding right?

• It isn't talking about the average gradient of the graph, it means fairly relative to the gradient at the rest of the points in the graph. A better definition would be - more than a little; to some degree Cambridge Dictionary Aug 14 '19 at 9:54
• A typical thing a mathematician might say is "for small angles, tan(x) is fairly close to sin(x)." The lecturer means it in this mathematical sense: "approximately", "quite", without being specific. You can indeed see it's pretty close: he just means "straight-ish", and is contrasted to the part where the curve visibly changes direction. (He also doesn't mean the dictionary sense using "average", nor any mathematical meaning of average.) Aug 14 '19 at 13:19