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[hel-yuh n] /ˈhɛl yən/
noun, Informal.
a disorderly, troublesome, rowdy, or mischievous person.
Origin of hellion
1835-45, Americanism; hell + -ion, as in scullion, rapscallion Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for hellion
Historical Examples
  • But I feel young, and I want to dance like a—like a hellion?

    Main Street Sinclair Lewis
  • "I'm a hustler on a dicker, and a hellion on junk," snapped the boss.

    Blow The Man Down Holman Day
  • She was some hellion, there on the top of the world, clawing and scratching tooth and nail—a regular she cat.

    The Red One Jack London
  • One spur for a log and one for any hellion who should get in the way of an honest drive!

  • I've been sivinteen years living down a reputation as a hellion.

    The Sheriff's Son William MacLeod Raine
  • A woman boss is bad enough, but a hellion is wu's,' was Jeff's statement.

    David Lannarck, Midget George S. Harney
British Dictionary definitions for hellion


(US, informal) a rough or rowdy person, esp a child; troublemaker Also called heller
Word Origin
C19: probably from dialect hallion rogue, of unknown origin
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 hellion

1846, American English, altered (by association with Hell) from Scottish/northern England dialectal hallion "worthless fellow, scamp" (1786), of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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