shillyshallier

shilly-shally

[shil-ee-shal-ee]
verb (used without object), shilly-shallied, shilly-shallying.
1.
to show indecision or hesitation; be irresolute; vacillate.
2.
to waste time; dawdle.
noun, plural shilly-shallies.
3.
irresolution; indecision; vacillation: It was sheer shilly-shally on his part.
adjective
4.
irresolute; undecided; vacillating.
adverb

Origin:
1690–1700; orig. repeated question, shall I? shall I? later altered on the model of its synonym dilly-dally

shilly-shallier, noun
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World English Dictionary
shillyshally (ˈʃɪlɪˌʃælɪ)
 
vb , -lies, -lying, -lied
1.  (intr) to be indecisive, esp over unimportant matters; hesitate
 
adv
2.  in an indecisive manner
 
adj
3.  indecisive or hesitant
 
n , -lies, -lying, -lied, -lies
4.  indecision or hesitation; vacillation
 
[C18: from shill I shall I, by reduplication of shall I]
 
'shillyshallier
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

shilly-shally
"vacillate," 1703, earlier shill I, shall I (1700), fanciful reduplication of shall I? (cf. wishy-washy, dilly-dally, etc.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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