noun, plural gul·leys.


[guhl-ee, goo l-ee]

noun, plural gul·leys. Scot. and North England.



or gul·ley

[guhl-ee, goo l-ee]

noun, plural gul·lies. Scot. and North England.

a knife, especially a large kitchen or butcher knife.

Origin of gully

First recorded in 1575–85; origin uncertain Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for gulley

cut, ditch, gap, trench, channel, gorge, valley, arroyo

Examples from the Web for gulley

Historical Examples of gulley

  • The aliens edged their way to a gulley along the side of the road.

    Jubilation, U.S.A.

    G. L. Vandenburg

  • I looked through the passage and saw that the gulley was black with baboons.

    Allan's Wife

    H. Rider Haggard

  • She went on till she came to a dip, or gulley, when a break in the cliff occurred.

    The Ferryman of Brill

    William H. G. Kingston

  • Soon some thirty of them had met with this fate, and the gulley was full to overflowing.

  • Page 19: "gulley" changed to "gully" (on either side by a gully).

British Dictionary definitions for gulley




noun plural -lies or -leys

a channel or small valley, esp one cut by heavy rainwater
NZ a small bush-clad valley
a deep, wide fissure between two buttresses in a mountain face, sometimes containing a stream or scree
  1. a fielding position between the slips and point
  2. a fielder in this position
either of the two channels at the side of a tenpin bowling lane

verb -lies, -lying or -lied

(tr) to make (channels) in (the ground, sand, etc)

Word Origin for gully

C16: from French goulet neck of a bottle; see gullet



noun plural -lies

Scot a large knife, such as a butcher's knife

Word Origin for gully

C16: of obscure 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

Word Origin and History for gulley



"channel made by running water," 1650s, possibly a variant of Middle English golet "water channel" (see gullet). Gully-washer, American English colloquial for "heavy rainstorm," attested by 1887.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

gulley in Science



A narrow, steep-sided channel formed in loose earth by running water. A gully is usually dry except after periods of heavy rainfall or after the melting of snow or ice.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.