Shilly-shally
Shilly-shally Shil"ly-shal`ly, v. i. To hesitate; to act in an irresolute manner; hence, to occupy one's self with trifles. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • shilly-shally — shilly shallier, n. /shil ee shal ee/, v., shilly shallied, shilly shallying, n., pl. shilly shallies, adj., adv. v.i. 1. to show indecision or hesitation; be irresolute; vacillate. 2. to waste time; dawdle. n. 3. irresolution; indecision;… …   Universalium

  • Shilly-shally — Shil ly shal ly, n. Irresolution; hesitation; also, occupation with trifles. [1913 Webster] She lost not one of her forty five minutes in picking and choosing, no shilly shally in Kate. De Quincey. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • shilly-shally — If people shilly shally, they can t make up their minds about something and put off the decision …   The small dictionary of idiomes

  • shilly-shally — ► VERB (shilly shallies, shilly shallied) ▪ be indecisive. ► NOUN ▪ indecisive behaviour. ORIGIN originally as shill I, shall I, reduplication of shall I? …   English terms dictionary

  • shilly-shally — [shil′ē shal΄ē] adv. [redupl. of shall I? meaning “shall I or shall I not?”] Now Rare in a vacillating manner; irresolutely n. Now Rare vacillation or irresolution, esp. over a trivial matter vi. shilly shallied, shilly shallying to be… …   English World dictionary

  • shilly-shally — (adj.) vacillate, 1703, earlier shill I, shall I (1700), fanciful reduplication of shall I? (Cf. WISHY WASHY (Cf. wishy washy), DILLY DALLY (Cf. dilly dally), etc.) …   Etymology dictionary

  • shilly-shally — UK [ˈʃɪlɪ ˌʃælɪ] / US verb [intransitive] Word forms shilly shally : present tense I/you/we/they shilly shally he/she/it shilly shallies present participle shilly shallying past tense shilly shallied past participle shilly shallied informal to… …   English dictionary

  • shilly-shally —    If people shilly shally, they can t make up their minds about something and put off the decision.   (Dorking School Dictionary)    ***    If you shilly shally, you hesitate a lot about something and have difficulty reaching a decision.    … …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • Shilly-shally — Shill I shall I Shill I shall I, Shilly shally Shil ly shal ly, adv. [A reduplication of shall I.] In an irresolute, undecided, or hesitating manner. [1913 Webster] I am somewhat dainty in making a resolution, because when I make it, I keep it; I …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • shilly-shally — verb To procrastinate or vacillate. Whatever you do, dont shilly shally no longer …   Wiktionary

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