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bully1

[boo l-ee] /ˈbʊl i/
noun, plural bullies.
1.
a blustering, quarrelsome, overbearing person who habitually badgers and intimidates smaller or weaker people.
2.
Archaic. a man hired to do violence.
3.
Obsolete. a pimp; procurer.
4.
Obsolete. good friend; good fellow.
5.
Obsolete. sweetheart; darling.
verb (used with object), bullied, bullying.
6.
to act the bully toward; intimidate; domineer.
verb (used without object), bullied, bullying.
7.
to be loudly arrogant and overbearing.
adjective
8.
Informal. fine; excellent; very good.
9.
dashing; jovial; high-spirited.
interjection
10.
Informal. good! well done!
Origin of bully1
1530-1540
1530-40; < Middle Dutch boele lover
Related forms
bullyable, adjective
unbullied, adjective
unbullying, adjective
Synonyms
6. cow, browbeat, coerce; terrorize, tyrannize.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for bulliest
Historical Examples
  • "Annie's the bulliest maid we ever had," Bobby had returned appreciatively.

    Much Ado About Peter Jean Webster
  • His nerve all through was the bulliest thing you ever saw, Uncle Bill.

  • He'd sit on the side porch with his pipe and Bismarck—he was an old collie—and he did tell the bulliest yarns.

    While Caroline Was Growing Josephine Daskam Bacon
  • It is for meabout the bulliest fun I ever had in my life, said young Kent.

    The Boss of Wind River David Goodger (goodger@python.org)
  • And the one in this book was the bulliest fighter of the lot.

    T. Tembarom Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • "This is the bulliest game I ever seen" was his ecstatic remark.

    Two Little Savages Ernest Thompson Seton
  • But I'm going to introduce to you the midshipman who knocked the mast out of the yacht, the bulliest shot I've ever seen.

    An Annapolis First Classman Lt.Com Edward L. Beach
  • It was the bulliest sort of a game, and a pleasant afternoon, too, but one passenger was no more than mildly interested.

    The A.E.F. Heywood Broun
  • "I'll give you the bulliest shine you ever had," said the ragamuffin.

    Brave and Bold Horatio Alger
  • “I know a place in town where they sell the bulliest sodas and sundaes,” cried Jimsy suddenly.

British Dictionary definitions for bulliest

bully1

/ˈbʊlɪ/
noun (pl) -lies
1.
a person who hurts, persecutes, or intimidates weaker people
2.
(archaic) a hired ruffian
3.
(obsolete) a procurer; pimp
4.
(obsolete) a fine fellow or friend
5.
(obsolete) a sweetheart; darling
verb -lies, -lying, -lied
6.
when tr, often foll by into. to hurt, intimidate, or persecute (a weaker or smaller person), esp to make him do something
adjective
7.
dashing; jolly: my bully boy
8.
(informal) very good; fine
interjection
9.
(informal) Also bully for you. well done! bravo!
Word Origin
C16 (in the sense: sweetheart, hence fine fellow, hence swaggering coward): probably from Middle Dutch boele lover, from Middle High German buole, perhaps childish variant of bruoderbrother

bully2

/ˈbʊlɪ/
noun (pl) -lies
1.
any of various small freshwater fishes of the genera Gobiomorphus and Philynodon of New Zealand Also called (NZ) pakoko, titarakura, toitoi
Word Origin
C20: short for cockabully
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bulliest

bully

n.

1530s, originally "sweetheart," applied to either sex, from Dutch boel "lover; brother," probably a diminutive of Middle Dutch broeder "brother" (cf. Middle High German buole "brother," source of German Buhle "lover;" see brother (n.)).

Meaning deteriorated 17c. through "fine fellow" and "blusterer" to "harasser of the weak" (1680s, from bully-ruffian, 1650s). Perhaps this was by influence of bull (n.1), but a connecting sense between "lover" and "ruffian" may be in "protector of a prostitute," which was one sense of bully (though not specifically attested until 1706). The expression meaning "worthy, jolly, admirable" (especially in 1864 U.S. slang bully for you!) is first attested 1680s, and preserves an earlier, positive sense of the word.

v.

1710, from bully (n.). Related: Bullied; bullying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for bulliest

bully

adjective

Excellent; good (1840s+)

interjection

: Bully for you! (1780s+)

noun

A track worker; gandy dancer (1900+ Railroad)

[first two senses fr bully, ''a beloved person, darling,'' of obscure origin, attested fr 1538. Bully, ''worthy, admirable,'' used of persons, is attested in 1681]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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