9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[gol-ee] /ˈgɒl i/
interjection, Informal.
(used as a mild exclamation expressing surprise, wonder, puzzlement, pleasure, or the like.)
Origin of golly
1840-50; euphemistic alteration of God Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for golly
  • These type of gee-golly articles do little to further the cause of sustainability.
  • And, golly, they even invented toilets that don't need paper.
  • Much of the data might be mistaken or fraudulent, but by golly it's right here in this computer.
  • When she sees a beach, by golly, she throws off her shoes and goes dancing.
  • It's a ponderous, toned-down golly-gee-whiz performance.
  • No, no one's knickers got into a twist until it came to contraception golly.
British Dictionary definitions for golly


an exclamation of mild surprise or wonder
Word Origin
C19: originally a euphemism for God


noun (pl) -lies
(Brit, informal) short for golliwog


verb -lies, -lying, -lied
to spit
noun (pl) -lies
a gob of spit
Word Origin
C20: altered from gollion a gob of phlegm, probably of imitative origin
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 golly

euphemism for God, first recorded 1775, in a source that refers to it as "a sort of jolly kind of oath, or asseveration much in use among our carters, & the lowest people."

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



A mild exclamation of surprise, dismay, pleasure, etc; gosh: Golly, Mom, did you really win it?

[1775+; a euphemism for God]

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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