What word or phrase does your mother always say?


[dan-dee] /ˈdæn di/
noun, plural dandies.
a man who is excessively concerned about his clothes and appearance; a fop.
Informal. something or someone of exceptional or first-rate quality:
Your reply was a dandy.
adjective, dandier, dandiest.
characteristic of a dandy; foppish.
Informal. fine; excellent; first-rate:
a dandy vacation spot.
Origin of dandy
1770-80; origin uncertain
Related forms
dandily, dandyishly, dandiacally
[dan-dahy-uh k-lee] /dænˈdaɪ ək li/ (Show IPA),
dandyish, dandiacal, adjective
dandyism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for dandy
  • Which all sounds fine and dandy until you start applying it to particular cases.
  • All is fine and dandy in their imaginations, but the final results leave a bit to be desired.
  • That's fine and dandy if the article would call spade a spade.
  • It could be used as a dandy doorstop, or a stepstool, or tinder for a really good fire.
  • He bore little resemblance to the apple-cheeked dandy of his official portraits.
  • Other magazines, newspapers and books also do a dandy job of filling space with weight that fritters away fuel.
  • Slate has published one of its handy dandy explainers on how such an investigation is typically carried out.
  • One glitch in this otherwise dandy setup: preventing the birds from ditching or destroying the transmitters.
  • But if you want to have a touch of the dandy this spring, you need to have a sense of play.
  • If there is going to be a burning hot ticket, how dandy that it's for art.
British Dictionary definitions for dandy


noun (pl) -dies
a man greatly concerned with smartness of dress; beau
a yawl or ketch
adjective -dier, -diest
(informal) very good or fine
Derived Forms
dandily, adverb
dandyish, adjective
dandyism, noun
Word Origin
C18: perhaps short for jack-a-dandy


another name for dengue


an acute viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes, characterized by headache, fever, pains in the joints, and skin rash Also called breakbone fever
Word Origin
C19: from Spanish, probably of African origin; compare Swahili kidinga
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
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Word Origin and History for dandy

c.1780, of uncertain origin; it first appeared in a Scottish border ballad:

I've heard my granny crack
O' sixty twa years back
When there were sic a stock of Dandies O
etc. In that region, Dandy is diminutive of Andrew (as it was in Middle English generally). The word was in vogue in London c.1813-1819. His female counterpart was a dandizette (1821) with French-type ending. The adjective dandy first recorded 1792; very popular c.1880-1900. Related: Dandified; dandify.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for dandy



: a dandy idea


: He does it dandy/ We get on just dandy


A person or thing that is remarkable, wonderful, superior, etc •Attested from 1784 in the form the dandy: You should get one, it's a dandy (1880s+, very popular 1900+)

Related Terms

hotsie-totsie, jim-dandy

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with dandy


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