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not on your nelly
An expression of one's refusal to do something. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. A: "Will you go out to the barn and clean up after the horses?" B: "Not on your nelly!"
Someone who is more timid, nervous, or anxious than is normal or reasonable. My mother's always a bit of a nervous Nellie around the grandkids, so she doesn't like to look after them. I'm too much of a nervous Nellie to ever do something like sky diving.
An exclamation of surprise. The phrase is generally thought to have originated as a command to slow down a horse (wherein "Nelly" is the horse's name). They're engaged already? Whoa, Nelly! Whoa, Nelly—what is going on in here?
An unduly timid or anxious person, as in He's a real nervous Nellie, calling the doctor about every little symptom. This term does not allude to a particular person named Nellie; rather, the name was probably chosen for the sake of alliteration. [Colloquial; c. 1920]
not on your nellyBRITISH, INFORMAL, OLD-FASHIONED
You can say not on your nelly to mean that there is no chance at all of something happening. Note: `Nelly' is sometimes spelled `nellie'. Will I be attending the ceremony? Not on your nelly! Note: This expression may come from cockney rhyming slang. `Not on your Nellie Duff' stands for `not on your puff', which also means `definitely not'.
not on your nellycertainly not.
This expression, modelled on the phrase not on your life , originated as not on your Nelly Duff , which is British rhyming slang for ‘puff’, meaning ‘breath of life’.
not on your ˈnelly(old-fashioned, British English, informal) definitely not: You want to borrow my new car? Not on your nelly! Nelly was short for Nelly Duff, which was rhyming slang for puff, an informal word for your life.
n. any nervous person, male or female. Sue is such a nervous Nellie. She should calm down.
A person who worries unduly or is foolishly fearful. The term apparently originated in the late 1920s and referred to Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg, who served from 1925 to 1929. It soon was picked up and used for any individual, male or female, who showed such qualities. Richard Dyer used it in a review of Acis and Galatea, writing: “The direction presented him [Acis] as a kind of nervous Nellie, unable to decide which shirt to wear to impress Galatea” (Boston Globe, Nov. 23, 2004). See also worry wart.