half-joking

half-joking

adj
said, done, or acting in a seemingly jokey manner, but with some serious intent
ˌhalf-ˈjokingly adv
References in classic literature ?
Vronsky heard with pleasure this light-hearted prattle of a pretty woman, agreed with her, gave her half-joking counsel, and altogether dropped at once into the tone habitual to him in talking to such women.
I will have another family,' she said, half-joking.
Duterte was joking or serious or even half-joking or half-serious.
Although Guardiola was half-joking his arrival has spread panic among some of City's squad.
Although Guardiola was half-joking, his arrival will have spread panic amongst some of the squad, who fear the axe under their new boss.
ROBERTO MARTINEZ may only have been half-joking when he suggested that Romelu Lukaku's price tag had now risen to PS55m following his latest goalscoring performance against West Ham.
It's unclear whether she will grow up to fulfill the sort of glorious destiny I have half-joking affixed to her, but one thing is for sure: her birth, with the relative sanity surrounding it, means that baby Arlo presages an entire new era for post-teen stardom.
We used to have fights all the time - sort of half-joking fights.
It's almost the size of a tablet, giving rise to the half-joking term "phablet.
Mandela would only be half-joking when he responded to a request by saying, "talk to Zelda, she runs my life".
Asked if he is going to raise the Genocide issue at the French Government, Aznavour said half-joking that he was going to
Beyond the half-joking suggestions that NASA should outsource its work to India, it's hard to conceive of a better advertisement for a low-cost, high-tech economy.