[ koh-lee ]

noun,plural co·lies.
  1. 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

Words Nearby coly Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use coly in a sentence

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

    Devonshire | 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
  • Colyton is five miles south-west of Axminster in the picturesque valley of the River coly, and three miles from the sea.

    Thomas Hardy's Dorset | Robert Thurston Hopkins
  • 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


/ (ˈkəʊlɪ) /

nounplural -lies
  1. 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 tail: Also called: mousebird

Origin of 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