sly

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Related to slyly: unceasingly

a sly dog

Someone who, through cunning, devious, or dishonest means, achieves a fortuitous outcome. What a sly dog, he managed to get a copy of the test so he could memorize the answers ahead of time!
See also: dog, sly

on the sly

Secretly; in a clandestine or furtive manner. Even though he said he'd quit smoking, he still kept up the habit on the sly. The senator had been taking bribes from lobbyists on the sly for years before he was caught.
See also: on, sly

on the sly

Fig. secretly and deceptively. She was stealing little bits of money on the sly. Martin was having an affair with the maid on the sly.
See also: on, sly

*sly as a fox

 and *cunning as a fox
Cliché smart and clever. (*Also: as ~.) My nephew is as sly as a fox. You have to be cunning as a fox to outwit me.
See also: fox, sly

on the sly

Furtively, secretly, as in She's always eating cookies on the sly. The adjective sly, which means "cunning" or "crafty," is here used as a noun. [c. 1800]
See also: on, sly

do something on the ˈsly

do something secretly: She didn’t seem to have much appetite for dinner. I wonder if she’s been eating chocolates on the sly? OPPOSITE: (out) in(to) the open
See also: on, sly, something

on the sly

mod. secretly and deceptively. She was stealing little bits of money on the sly.
See also: on, sly

sly

mod. excellent; cool. That is really a sly jacket you got there.

on the sly

In a way intended to escape notice: took extra payments on the sly.
See also: on, sly
References in periodicals archive ?
Well let me say to Mr Davies stealthily, slyly,Eurocrats are devising a constitution which will destroy Britain's nationhood and will allow Brussels control of everything from our borders to our banks.
Her solos on the latter composition are particularly sharp, slyly evoking everything from barrelhouse blues to the cool mathematics of Lenny Tristano.
Terse, tight-lipped and fevered Victor LaValle's The Ecstatic is an auspicious first novel that ranges with obsessive-compulsive precision over the same pulpy patch of black-geek meta-culture that Colson Whitehead so slyly (and effectively) attacked with The Intuitionist.
Then she slyly adds, "This margin being too mean for my purpose, the reader must look elsewhere for the New Geometry of Irregular Forms discovered by Thomasina Coverly"
When the French philosopher Maurice Blanchot slyly warned, "If there is, among all words, one that is inauthentic, then surely it is the word 'authentic,'" he might have been cautioning against the authenticity touted on advertisements, flap or back copy, and reviews of many of the best-selling "ethnic impersonator autobiographies" that Laura Browder studies.
Busy bossa nova Pilot, slyly seductive She Ain't Missing You and lush single Pretender Got My Heart steal the show, the latter with the ambience of a 70s TV mini-series.
If he was slyly attempting to pop the stock-market bubble, he certainly succeeded.
After University of Toronto philosophy professor Mark Kingwell, a vocal and public opponent of academic tenure, was awarded tenure, he reflected slyly on the development in his book In Pursuit of Happiness: Better Living from Plato to Prozac (2000): The rumors that my academic colleagues only gave me a permanent job so that I would finally shut up about them, or the theory that the surest way to tenure is to argue for its abolition on television, do not, so far as I know, have any basis in fact.
Otis Spunkmeyer's four-ounce Low Fat Muffins have almost 400 calories each, though the package slyly claims that a serving is half a muffin.
The verses rhyme effortlessly, moving like the animals they describe: "Grand and gray, the regal ray slyly glides upon its prey.
American newspaper columnist, author, humorist, and political satirist, who used good-natured humor to comment slyly and trenchantly on a wide range of social and political matters.
So begins Tamar Davis' seductive introduction on her website, slyly touting her much anticipated debut album, Milk & Honey, (in-stores on August 29th) to a world about to get to know her as more than another Prince protege.
Burt Lancaster is slyly commanding in this sombre Elmore Leonard story that builds to an unforgettable face-off.
Opens Friday THE STARS Channing Tatum, Rooney Mara THE VERDICT Director Steven Soderbergh's slyly subversive film might lack the conniving elegance of his Ocean's Eleven trilogy, but in its own underhand way, this thriller about a depressed woman - played with zeal by Girl With the Dragon Tattoo star Rooney Mara - does offer some nicely nasty fun and games.