or gil·ly

[ gil-ee ]

  1. Scot.

    • a hunting or fishing guide.

    • a male attendant or personal servant to a Highland chieftain.

Origin of gillie

First recorded in 1590–1600, gillie is from the Scots Gaelic word gille lad, servant

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

How to use gillie in a sentence

  • Instantly, a gillie incongruously in a flower-seller's dress, she was on her feet and walking a little ahead.

    Mushroom Town | Oliver Onions
  • There have been anglers who, when the salmon was once on, handed him over to the gillie to play and land.

    Angling Sketches | Andrew Lang
  • The gillie put us across Loch Rannoch in the dusk of the next day, and gave us his opinion as to our best route.

    Kidnapped | Robert Louis Stevenson
  • We pile them in a heap for the gillie to collect as he comes along.

  • Indignant gillie (to Jones, of London, who has by mistake killed a hind).

British Dictionary definitions for gillie


ghillie or gilly

/ (ˈɡɪlɪ) /

nounplural -lies Scot
  1. an attendant or guide for hunting or fishing

  2. (formerly) a Highland chieftain's male attendant or personal servant

Origin of gillie

C17: from Scottish Gaelic gille boy, servant

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