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wily

[wahy-lee] /ˈwaɪ li/
adjective, wilier, wiliest.
1.
full of, marked by, or proceeding from wiles; crafty; cunning.
Origin of wily
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English; see wile, -y1
Related forms
wilily, adverb
wiliness, noun
overwily, adjective
unwily, adjective
Synonyms
artful, sly, designing, intriguing, tricky, foxy, deceitful, treacherous.
Antonyms
straightforward, open.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for wily
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This overt act was just what was desired by the wily Puritans.

    Acadia Frederic S. Cozzens
  • Have you not sought to fascinate Maurice by every species of wily coquetry?

    Fairy Fingers Anna Cora Mowatt Ritchie
  • Some of these wily prophets pretend to read their predictions in the course of the planets.

    Popular Books on Natural Science Aaron David Bernstein
  • Roosevelt attempted to head them back, but the wily cattle eluded him.

  • Yet preferable, I should say, to the wily and treacherous savages the Americans have been accustomed to fighting.

    The Thorn in the Nest Martha Finley
British Dictionary definitions for wily

wily

/ˈwaɪlɪ/
adjective wilier, wiliest
1.
characterized by or proceeding from wiles; sly or crafty
Derived Forms
wiliness, noun
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 wily
adj.

c.1300, from wile + -ly (1). Related: Wiliness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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10
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