noun, plural gul·lies. Also gulley (for defs 1, 2).
  1. a small valley or ravine originally worn away by running water and serving as a drainageway after prolonged heavy rains.
  2. a ditch or gutter.
  3. Cricket.
    1. the position of a fielder between point and slips.
    2. the fielder occupying this position.
verb (used with object), gul·lied, gul·ly·ing.
  1. to make gullies in.
  2. to form (channels) by the action of water.

Origin of gully

1530–40; apparently variant of gullet, with -y replacing French -et

Synonyms for gully Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gullied

Historical Examples of gullied

  • From the high ground the water had gullied for its passage a channel to the lower end.

    Field and Forest

    Oliver Optic

  • The face was covered with gray bristle and gullied with wrinkles.

    To Him That Hath

    Leroy Scott

  • The brown dirt path had been scoured and then gullied by the hard downpour.

    The Corner House Girls

    Grace Brooks Hill

  • They are not so liable to be gullied by sudden thaws or flooding rains.

  • Yet his I thought very poor indeed; for it was (as is termed in America) gullied; which I call broken land.

    George Washington: Farmer

    Paul Leland Haworth

British Dictionary definitions for gullied




noun plural -lies or -leys
  1. a channel or small valley, esp one cut by heavy rainwater
  2. NZ a small bush-clad valley
  3. a deep, wide fissure between two buttresses in a mountain face, sometimes containing a stream or scree
  4. cricket
    1. a fielding position between the slips and point
    2. a fielder in this position
  5. either of the two channels at the side of a tenpin bowling lane
verb -lies, -lying or -lied
  1. (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
  1. 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 gullied



"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

gullied in Science


  1. 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.