[ dal-ee ]
/ ˈdæl i /

verb (used without object), dal·lied, dal·ly·ing.

to waste time; loiter; delay.
to act playfully, especially in an amorous or flirtatious way.
to play mockingly; trifle: to dally with danger.

verb (used with object), dal·lied, dal·ly·ing.

to waste (time) (usually followed by away).

Origin of dally

1250–1300; Middle English dalien < Anglo-French dalier to chat, of uncertain origin


1 See loiter.
2 flirt, tease, trifle.
3 toy.

Related forms

dal·li·er, noundal·ly·ing·ly, adverbun·dal·ly·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for dally

British Dictionary definitions for dally


/ (ˈdælɪ) /

verb -lies, -lying or -lied (intr)

to waste time idly; dawdle
(usually foll by with) to deal frivolously or lightly with; trifle; toyto dally with someone's affections

Derived Forms

dallier, noun

Word Origin for dally

C14: from Anglo-French dalier to gossip, of uncertain origin
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