noun, plural bud·dies.

comrade or chum (often used as a term of address).

verb (used without object), bud·died, bud·dy·ing.

to be a companion; be friendly or on intimate terms.

Verb Phrases

buddy up,
  1. to become friendly; be on friendly or intimate terms.
  2. to work closely together: to buddy up with a student from another high school.
buddy up to, to become friendly with or curry the favor of: He was buddying up to the political bosses.

Origin of buddy

1840–50, Americanism; perhaps reduced form of brother




a male given name.


[bohl-duh n]


CharlesBuddy, 1868?–1931, U.S. cornet player: early pioneer in jazz.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for buddy

Contemporary Examples of buddy

Historical Examples of buddy

  • I could figure out how mother might be able not to see anything but good in Buddy.

    Shorty McCabe

    Sewell Ford

  • Just about then, though, Buddy seemed to have got a bulletin over a special wire.

    Shorty McCabe

    Sewell Ford

  • He was an Irish buddy tae, but there were severals converted.

    St. Cuthbert's

    Robert E. Knowles

  • You know, buddy, somebody ought to teach guys like you a lesson.

    Pagan Passions

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • It wasn't fair to kick your buddy in the face or get on his ear.

    The Delta of the Triple Elevens

    William Elmer Bachman

British Dictionary definitions for buddy


noun plural -dies

mainly US and Canadian an informal word for friend Also called (as a term of address): bud
a volunteer who visits and gives help and support to a person suffering from AIDS
a volunteer who gives help and support to a person who has become disabled but is returning to work

verb -dying or -died

(intr) to act as a buddy to a person suffering from AIDS

Word Origin for buddy

C19: probably a baby-talk variant (US) of brother



Buddy, real name Charles Bolden . 1868–1931, US Black jazz cornet player; a pioneer of the New Orleans style
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

Word Origin and History for buddy

1850, American English, possibly an alteration of brother, or from British colloquial butty "companion" (1802), itself perhaps a variant of booty in booty fellow "confederate who shares plunder" (1520s). But butty, meaning "work-mate," also was a localized dialect word in England and Wales, attested since 18c., and long associated with coal miners. Short form bud is attested from 1851. Reduplicated form buddy-buddy (adj.) attested by 1952, American English.

Lenny Kent, a long-time fave here, is really in his element. ... After four weeks here he's got everone in town saying, "Hiya, Buddy, Buddy" with a drawl simulating his. [Review of Ned Schuyler's 5 O'Clock Club, Miami Beach, Fla., "Billboard," Nov. 12, 1949]

Buddy system attested from 1920.


1931, perhaps originally U.S. underworld slang, usually with up, from buddy (n.). Related: Buddied; buddying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper