noun, plural sal·lies.

  1. a sortie of troops from a besieged place upon an enemy.
  2. a sudden rushing forth or activity.
  3. an excursion or trip, usually off the main course.
  4. an outburst or flight of passion, fancy, etc.: a sally of anger.
  5. a clever, witty, or fanciful remark.
  6. Carpentry. a projection, as of the end of a rafter beyond the notch by which the rafter is fitted over the wall plate.

verb (used without object), sal·lied, sal·ly·ing.

  1. to make a sally, as a body of troops from a besieged place.
  2. to set out on a side trip or excursion.
  3. to set out briskly or energetically.
  4. (of things) to issue forth.


  1. a female given name, form of Sarah.

noun plural -lies

  1. a sudden violent excursion, esp by besieged forces to attack the besiegers; sortie
  2. a sudden outburst or emergence into action, expression, or emotion
  3. an excursion or jaunt
  4. a jocular retort

verb -lies, -lying or -lied (intr)

  1. to make a sudden violent excursion
  2. (often foll by forth) to go out on an expedition, etc
  3. to come, go, or set out in an energetic manner
  4. to rush out suddenly

noun plural -lies

  1. the lower part of a bell rope, where it is caught at handstroke, into which coloured wool is woven to make a grip

noun plural -lies

  1. a member of the Salvation Army

n.1540s, “a sudden rush, dash, or springing forth; specifically of troops from a besieged place, attacking the besiegers,” from Middle French saillie “a rushing forth,” noun use of fem. past participle of saillir “to leap,” from Latin salire “to leap” (see salient (adj.)). Sally-port “gate or passage in a fortification to afford free egress to troops in making a sally” is from 1640s. fem. proper name, alteration of Sarah (cf. Hal from Harry, Moll from Mary, etc.). Sally Lunn cakes (1780) supposedly named for the woman in Bath who first made them and sold them in the streets. Sally Ann as a nickname for Salvation Army is recorded from 1927. v.1540s, from sally (n.). Related: Sallied; sallying.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

48 queries 0.417