willies

[ wil-eez ]
/ ˈwɪl iz /

noun (used with a plural verb) Informal.

nervousness or fright; jitters; creeps (usually preceded by the): That horror movie gave me the willies.

Origin of willies

1895–1900, Americanism; origin obscure; cf. -s3

Definition for willies (2 of 3)

Willie

[ wil-ee ]
/ ˈwɪl i /

noun

a male given name, form of William.
a female given name.

Definition for willies (3 of 3)

willy

or wil·ley

[ wil-ee ]
/ ˈwɪl i /

noun, plural wil·lies.

verb (used with object), wil·lied, wil·ly·ing.

to willow (cotton).

Origin of willy

1825–35; special use of dial. willy, Old English wilige basket (orig. one made of willow twigs); akin to willow
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for willies

British Dictionary definitions for willies (1 of 2)

willies

/ (ˈwɪlɪz) /

pl n

the willies slang nervousness, jitters, or fright (esp in the phrase give (or get) the willies)

Word Origin for willies

C20: of unknown origin

British Dictionary definitions for willies (2 of 2)

willy

/ (ˈwɪlɪ) /

noun

British informal a childish or jocular term for penis
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 willies

willies


n.

1896, "spell of nervousness," perhaps from the woollies, a dialectal term for "nervous uneasiness," probably in reference to the itchiness of wool garments.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with willies

willies


see under the creeps.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.