- any scaly-bulbed plant of the genus Lilium, having showy, funnel-shaped or bell-shaped flowers.Compare lily family.
- the flower or the bulb of such a plant.
- any of various related or similar plants or their flowers, as the mariposa lily or the calla lily.
- fleur-de-lis, especially as the symbol of France.
- Bowling. a split in which the five, seven, and ten pins remain standing.
- white as a lily: her lily hands.
- delicately fair: a lily maiden.
- pure; unsullied: the lily truth.
- pale; fragile; weak.
- gild the lily. gild1(def 4).
Origin of lily
- a female given name.
Examples from the Web for lily
Lily Allen explained away the poor sales and ho-hum critical reception to Sheezus by…basically blaming other people.The Biggest Bombs of 2014: ‘Sex Tape,’ Mariah Carey’s Vocals, ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and More
December 19, 2014
One person who tuned into my story was Matt Creed, the director of Lily.Blogger Shares and Shames Cancer in ‘Lily’
December 9, 2014
At least for now, Modern Family is taking the less-is-more approach, and resisting turning it into The Lily Show.Stop Hating on ‘Modern Family’ (But Also Stop Giving It Emmys)
October 15, 2014
I met him because his daughter, Lily, and my daughter, Harley, are friends.Kevin Smith's Marijuanaissance: On 'Tusk,' 'Falling Out' with Ben Affleck, and 20 Years of 'Clerks'
September 9, 2014
Lily told how she once found her mother sitting in front of the television and crying.Will Meredith Vieira Ever Stop Crying? Her Emotional Daytime TV Debut
September 8, 2014
He was altogether unprepared for the reception which the lily received.
Then at last she reached forth her hand and broke the lily from its stalk.
Deer came at night to feed on the lily buds on the lake borders.The Trail Book
And were the Lily and her lover to be more fortunate than all those millions?The Lily's Quest (From "Twice Told Tales")
Flora, whom he had left a lily, had become a peony; but that was not much.Little Dorrit
- any liliaceous perennial plant of the N temperate genus Lilium, such as the Turk's-cap lily and tiger lily, having scaly bulbs and showy typically pendulous flowers
- the bulb or flower of any of these plants
- any of various similar or related plants, such as the water lily, plantain lily, and day lily
Word Origin and History for lily
Old English lilie, from Latin lilia, plural of lilium "a lily," cognate with Greek leirion, both perhaps borrowed from a corrupted pronunciation of an Egyptian word. Used in Old Testament to translate Hebrew shoshanna and in New Testament to translate Greek krinon. As an adjective, 1530s, "white, pure, lovely;" later "pale, colorless" (1580s).
Also from the Latin word are German lilie, French lis, Spanish lirio, Italian giglio. The lily of the valley translates Latin lilium convallium (Vulgate), a literal rendition of the Hebrew term in Song of Solomon ii:1. It apparently was applied to a particular plant (Convallaria majalis) first by 16c. German herbalists. Lily pad is from 1834, American English.
Idioms and Phrases with lily
see gild the lily.