verb (used without object), shil·ly-shal·lied, shil·ly-shal·ly·ing.
noun, plural shil·ly-shal·lies.
Origin of shilly-shally
Examples from the Web for shilly-shally
She was not a woman weakly to accommodate herself to shilly-shally proceedings.George Eliot|Mathilde Blind
Descend, sir, from your shilly-shally generalities and verbal fallacies.Diary from November 12, 1862, to October 18, 1863|Adam Gurowski
Which, by the way, amounts to an admission that he does shilly-shally sometimes.The Humour of Homer and Other Essays|Samuel Butler
The Kaiser, instead of taking strong measures at once, pursued his usual policy of shilly-shally.The Story of Nuremberg|Cecil Headlam
Your Uncle William used to make fun of me and sing 'Shilly-shally with the wee girls, ha, ha, ha!'The Foolish Lovers|St. John G. Ervine
Word Origin and History for shilly-shally
"to vacillate," 1782, from adverbial expression to stand shilly-shally (1703), earlier shill I, shall I (1700), a fanciful reduplication of shall I? (cf. wishy-washy, dilly-dally, etc.). From 1734 as an adjective, by 1755 as a noun. Related: Shilly-shallying (1816).