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a real dilly

Something or someone remarkable, excellent, or very entertaining. "Dilly," an American term from the early 1900s, possibly comes from the first syllable of the word "delightful" or "delicious." Primarily heard in US. I tell you, she's a real dilly. Out at 6 a.m. for a run, getting the kids off to school at 7, then out to manage the firm at 8. That film last night was a real dilly, I couldn't stop thinking about it all night.
See also: dilly, real

dilly-dally (around) with (someone or something)

To waste time with someone or something. You spent so much time dilly-dallying with your friends that now you'll be up all night writing that paper.

What's the dilly?

slang What happened, is happening, or is going to happen? Why did something happen or is someone acting a certain way? ("Dilly" is likely a colloquial pronunciation of "dealy," itself a humorous, informal form of "deal.") You seem upset—what's the dilly, yo? So, what's the dilly? Are we heading straight to the movie or do you want to grab dinner first?
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

dilly-dally (around) with someone or something

to waste time frivolously with someone or something. Stop dilly dallying around with your friends. He is always dilly-dallying around with his work.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


n. something excellent. This little car is a real dilly.

What’s the dilly?

interrog. What’s going on?; What’s the deal? (Dilly is a pronunciation of dealy.) Who’s shouting? What’s the dilly?
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Critique: Author Renaud Dillies (winner of Best First Album Award at the Angouleme Comics Festival, France's highest set of awards for comics) has a gift for creating unforgettable comic parables.
"He was a very talented dove worker," Dillies said.
19 "Let's Do Magic!" performances is as fine a roster of magicians as you are likely to see at one place and time, Dillies said.
The performers are scheduled to include (both at matinee and evening shows unless specifically indicated) Dillies; Eric DeCamps, sleight-of-hand artist from New York City's "Pure Magic: A Performance of Contemporary Conjuring"; Peter Samelson, from the Broadway hit show "Monday Night Magic"; Steve Kradolfer, founding producer of The Mystery Lounge in Cambridge (matinee show); Joe Howard, a regular performer at The Mystery Lounge (evening show); Jon Stetson, "America's Master Mentalist" (matinee show); Mike Bent, who has been voted Boston Magazine's "Best of Boston"; and Chipper Lowell from Los Angeles, who has been voted two-time "Comedy Magician of the Year." In addition, music will be performed by The Andrew Riordan Jazz Project
Dillies said she and event co-producer Bill Hoagland (also a magician and comedian) had discussed several possible venues for the shows.
"David is just phenomenal at close-up magic," said Dillies. "If he was doing a corporate event he would be walking around doing magic with them at their tables."
"But there are people who are susceptible to it," Dillies said of HP.
Another strength of Dillies is that Andrew, Jo and their staff go to great lengths to ensure that choosing a bottle of wine is in no way intimidating or even embarrassing.
"I'm aware that collectors do the rounds of the wine shops," Andrew told me, and he's determined that they'll always find something tempting at Dillies.
DELIGHTFUL Andrew and Jo Foster, owners of Dillies ...
Some of the wines, sourced from major importers such as Liberty and Enotria can also be found on the shelves of other leading independent wine merchants in the region, and Dillies also carry a welcome selection from local Portuguese wine importers, Martavine and Portovino.
THE WINNERS Best New Business: Jo Foster, Dillies Young Entrepreneur of the Year: Cathi Harrison, Para-Sols Best Small Business: Angela Place, Hair X Tensions Ltd Best Retail Business: Susan Routledge, Finishing Touch Health & Beauty Clinic Best Creative Business: Joanna Feeley, Trend Bible Best Home-based Business: Rachel Poad, Rachel Poad Interiors Best Use of Technology: Alison Taylor, Food Local Food Best Rural Business: Amynta Ward-Aldam, Tulip and Nettle Best Social Enterprise: Deloris Martin, Sunderland Dance CIC The Susan Dobson Award for Entrepreneurs hip: Lilian Mains, Zodiac Training
Dillies offers a postal and delivery service and can tailor-make items and wrap to your requirements.
For more information call Dillies on 01434 606045, e-mail info@dillies.co.uk or visit the website on www.dillies.co.uk Get Smart.