Do you often come across the phrase duly noted but wonder what it really means? Well, you’re not alone in this confusion because we would muddle over it in the beginning too.
Duly noted is an adverbial phrase in the English language and people use it in a range of settings. From formal to informal speech, this phrase appears repeatedly in conversations of every scope.
However, the tone and setting in which you use the phrase, coupled with your intention behind it, determines the meaning. The context of your sentence in which you employ the phrase will either convey to the listener of your immediate acknowledgment and observation.
On the other hand, a sarcastic or ironic usage may also express to the listener of your disregard of their message or piece of information.
The English language has plenteous phrases like duly noted, which many of us find difficult to understand and use correctly. But we’re with you in this struggle and therefore, offer a wide variety of workbooks and printable worksheets to help.
Practice makes a man perfect and the more practice resources you have the better your language skills will get. By the end of this article, we can bet you’ll be using duly noted like a pro. Keep reading!
Duly Noted – By Definition
In simple words, the phrase means that a person has acknowledged or recorded a message or piece of information respectively. The phrase also carries a promise that the person will consider the piece of information in due time.
Duly noted is an adverbial phrase and depending on your context, you can use it both formally and informally. In the adverb form the phrase typically indicates the recording or observation of something.
However, in a business setting the duly noted indicates that a matter or piece of information will receive appropriate consideration in due time.
Let’s break down the individual words that the phrase under discussion comprises.
The first word of the phrase is duly and it means in a due manner or in due time. We use this word to express that we are in strict accordance with certain requirements in a given setting. Duly is also an adjective and in this form, the word means the following:
You will usually see ‘duly’ in the following kind of examples:
- We have duly elected all the officials
- We requested the involved parties of the project to duly sign the contract
- The student immediately realized his mistake and duly apologized to the teacher.
Noted is a verb and it always means to memorize or record something, either in written form or verbally. You will see it in sentences like the ones below:
- The students noted down the project details.
- The audience noted the vast subject knowledge of the speaker
- The sports teacher noted the names of all the participants of the relay race.
- I have noted down the date and time of the garden party.
Now many people falsely believe that because this is an informal phrase too, hence it is somewhat sarcastic and rude. The fact is that often people write the phrase in a sarcastic or ironic way, which is why it is a cause of confusion.
Let’s find out below when the phrase is ironic or sarcastic.
Duly Noted – Irony or Sarcasm
There are times when the phrase in a less formal setting can sound sarcastic or ironic. Usually, such a scenario involves the discharging of an idea, subject, or statement as a thing of less importance.
For example, the speaker may state a piece of information he/she wishes the audience to acknowledge but it is of no primary importance.
For example, if you tell your boss, “Mam, I dislike the way you make your staff overwork to meet your objectives” and the boss replies, “Duly noted.”
This means that the boss has heard you complain but does not really care much about it and doesn’t even feel the need to explain why.
In such a setting, the use of the phrase is sarcastic for certain because it makes the listener feel insulted and disrespected.
Duly noted as a Response – Is it Rude?
Many people ask us if it would be rude to use duly noted in response. Perhaps you are wondering the same thing after reading the explanation above. The fact is that it truly depends on how you say duly noted in response and what your intention is.
Look at our example sentence above. The tone of the boss’ response and the lack of explanation in the sentence proves that the person is not interested in resolving the complaint.
It shows the complete disregard of the boss and the disinterest in trying to solve a severe issue. Therefore, the use of duly noted in this case is downright rude.
The truth is that whenever you use the phrase in response with misplaced or inappropriate humor, to disregard a severe issue etc. it is rude.
This is especially true if there is an alternative and healthier way of responding.
Let’s take a look at the example below to clear the confusion.
Employee: “Mam, I dislike the way you make your staff overwork to meet your objectives.”
Boss: “Duly noted. I apologize for overworking you all but lately there has been an influx of work and a shortage of staff. But I promise I shall hire more help soon and ease the load for everyone.”
As you can see above, the use of the phrase in the response is not at all rude or offensive, because of the assuring explanation. The boss not only takes note of the complaint but also offers an explanation and a solution immediately.
Non-Sarcastic Usage of Duly Noted
Here are some sample sentences where you can note the straightforward yet non-offensive or non-sarcastic use of duly noted.
- I assure you that I have duly noted your concerns and will take prompt action to resolve those.
- We have duly noted your suggestions and will begin implementing relevant policies soon.
- The client was outrageous while complaining about the poor service. The customer representative replied, “Sir, please calm down. I have duly noted your complaint and will contact the management immediately to resolve it for you.”
- The authorities duly noted the changes the residents had made to the landscape without obtaining a permit first.
- The committee has made significant changes which we have duly noted.
- The banking staff has duly noted a huge amount of money that is missing from a specific account. They will be launching an investigation soon.
- The ministers duly noted the concerns of the citizens during the meeting.
Let’s also take a look at some instances when we can judge that the use of duly noted is sarcastic and rude.
- The son rolled his eyes and responded saying, “Duly noted” when his dad advised him to pay more attention to his studies.
- Grandpa gently told his teenage grandson, “Don’t chew loudly at the table. It is against good etiquettes.” The grandson replied, “Duly noted” and continued chomping away at the dining table.
- The student requested, “Sir, can you please dictate a little slowly? I am unable to keep up with you.” The sir replied, “Duly noted” and continued dictating without slowing down.
Duly Noted – Misspellings
Did you know that in addition to being one of the most confusing phrases, duly noted is also one of the most misspelled phrases?
Yes, the English language is tricky but often people make it even more confusing with misspellings and incorrect forms of phrases.
Surely you too must have come across variations of the phrase. While the phrase may be acceptable even in a sarcastic way, what is absolutely incorrect is misspelling it. Let’s take a look at the incorrect spellings of the phrase you must avoid.
This is one of the most common misspelling of the phrase you will encounter. Dually is not an incorrect word and it means double, twice, or two ways. But dually will certainly change the context of your phrase duly noted.
If you say, “I have dually noted” it will mean that you have noted the information or message two times. Surely that’s not the expression you will want to convey right?
Another important thing to note is that duly with a single ‘l’ is the correct form. We do not need dully with double‘ll’ because it will not just change the pronunciation but also the meaning.
Dully means boring, lacking luster, or sluggish, and ‘dully noted’ as a phrase will make no sense.
Here’s a tip: Do you want to save your writing from unintentional spelling errors, grammatical mistakes and punctuation errors? You can always run your finished written piece through Grammarly.
Duly noted is an adverbial phrase that indicates the recording, observation, or acceptance of a message or information. Formally, the phrase means that a person has paid heed to and noted what another has said.
However, in an informal setting duly noted can also sound sarcastic, depending on the context one uses it in.
With more practice and usage, you will soon conquer the English language phrases!