back-alley

[ bak-al-ee ]
/ ˈbækˈæl i /

adjective

dirty, unprepossessing, sordid, or clandestine: back-alley morals; back-alley political schemes.

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Origin of back-alley

An Americanism dating back to 1860–65
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Idioms and Phrases with back-alley

back alley

see under back street.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.