[ hur-lee-bur-lee, -bur- ]
/ ˈhɜr liˈbɜr li, -ˌbɜr- /

noun, plural hurl·y-burl·ies.

noisy disorder and confusion; commotion; uproar; tumult.


full of commotion; tumultuous.

Origin of hurly-burly

1520–30; alteration of hurling (and) burling, rhyming phrase based on hurling in its (now obsolete) sense of tumult, uproar Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for hurly-burly

British Dictionary definitions for hurly-burly


/ (ˈhɜːlɪˈbɜːlɪ) /

noun plural hurly-burlies

confusion or commotion



Word Origin for hurly-burly

C16: from earlier hurling and burling, rhyming phrase based on hurling in obsolete sense of uproar
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