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wily

[wahy-lee]
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adjective, wil·i·er, wil·i·est.
  1. full of, marked by, or proceeding from wiles; crafty; cunning.
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Origin of wily

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at wile, -y1
Related formswil·i·ly, adverbwil·i·ness, nouno·ver·wil·y, adjectiveun·wil·y, adjective

Synonyms

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artful, sly, designing, intriguing, tricky, foxy, deceitful, treacherous.

Antonyms

straightforward, open.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wiliest

Historical Examples

  • Twist says not Twist calls her the wiliest serpent he ever saw, but not mad.

    One Of Them

    Charles James Lever

  • In this long controversy the French were the wiliest, the British were the most arrogant.

    The Mentor: The War of 1812

    Albert Bushnell Hart

  • The wiliest person cannot for ever conceal his fundamental character from the simplest.

    Mental Efficiency

    Arnold Bennett

  • The wiliest of men could not have summoned up all the tears he shed.

    The Memoirs of Madame Vige Lebrun

    Marie Louise Elisabeth Vige-Lebrun

  • For there, under a log, lurks the wiliest trout I have ever encountered.

    Tenting To-night

    Mary Roberts Rinehart


British Dictionary definitions for wiliest

wily

adjective wilier or wiliest
  1. characterized by or proceeding from wiles; sly or crafty
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Derived Formswiliness, noun
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 wiliest

wily

adj.

c.1300, from wile + -ly (1). Related: Wiliness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper