noun, plural co·lies.

any of several slender, fruit-eating, African birds constituting the family Coliidae, having grayish-brown plumage and a long, pointed tail.

Origin of coly

< New Latin colius < Greek koliós green woodpecker
Also called mousebird. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for coly

Historical Examples of coly

  • Colyton is a small market-town, beautifully situated in the Coly valley, near the border of Dorset, with a fine church.


    Francis A. Knight

  • "Coly" took a team to-day and I am restored to my old position of No. 6, which I like the best of any.

    An Artilleryman's Diary

    Jenkin Lloyd Jones

  • They stood at the end of the platform, watching the train driving quickly up the valley until it stopped at Coly.

    Changing Winds

    St. John G. Ervine

British Dictionary definitions for coly


noun plural -lies

any of the arboreal birds of the genus Colius, family Coliidae, and order Coliiformes, of southern Africa. They have a soft hairlike plumage, crested head, and very long tailAlso called: mousebird

Word Origin for coly

C19: from New Latin colius, probably from Greek kolios woodpecker
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