verb al·ly \ə-ˈlī, ˈa-ˌlī\

: to join (yourself) with another person, group, etc., in order to get or give support


Full Definition of ALLY

transitive verb
:  to unite or form a connection or relation between :  associate <allied himself with a wealthy family by marriage>
intransitive verb
:  to form or enter into an alliance <two factions allying with each other>

Examples of ALLY

  1. She's allied herself with the moderates on this issue.
  2. countries allying themselves with the EU
  3. He'll even admit that he's hoping to ally himself to a wealthy family by marriage.
  4. They've allied with their former enemies.
  5. There may be occasions when America can ally with some of those states, as we did during the Gulf War. —Ramesh Ponnuru, National Review, 15 Oct. 2001

Origin of ALLY

Middle English allien, from Anglo-French alier, from Latin alligare to bind to, from ad- + ligare to bind — more at ligature
First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with ALLY

aby, agley, air-dry, Alai, Altai, anti, apply, assai, awry, aye-aye, Bacchae, Baha'i, banzai, barfly, bee fly, Belgae, belie, bigeye, big lie, black eye, blackfly, black tie, blow-dry, blowby, blowfly, blue-sky, Bo Hai, bone-dry, bonsai, botfly, Brunei, buckeye, bugeye, bye-bye, canaille, catchfly, cat's-eye, Chennai, chess pie, Chiang Mai, cockeye, cockshy, come by, comply, cow pie, crane fly, cross-eye, deadeye, decry, deep-fry, deep-sky, deerfly, defy, Delphi, deny, descry, do by, dong quai, drip-dry, drop by, dry eye, dry fly, elhi, Eli, espy, face fly, firefly, fish-eye, flesh fly, flyby, fly high, forby, freeze-dry, frogeye, fruit fly, gadfly, gallfly, get by, GI, glass eye, go by, good-bye, greenfly, grisaille, gun-shy, Haggai, Hawkeye, heel fly, hereby, hi-fi, hog-tie, horn fly, horsefly, housefly, imply, jai alai, July, Karzai, Kasai, knee-high, lanai, Lanai, lay-by, lay by, Lehigh, let fly, Levi, lie by, magpie, mai tai, mao-tai, Masai, mayfly, medfly, mind's eye, Moirai, mooneye, Mumbai, my eye, nearby, necktie, nilgai, nisi, outbye, outcry, oxeye, pad thai, Panay, panfry, Parcae, piece-dye, pigsty, pinkeye, Po Hai, pop eye, pop fly, potpie, put by, Qinghai, quasi, rabbi, red-eye, rely, reply, rib eye, ride high, rocaille, rough-dry, run dry, Sakai, sand fly, sci-fi, screw eye, semi, Sendai, serai, set by, shanghai, Shanghai, sheep's eye, shoofly, shut-eye, Sinai, sky-high, small-fry, stand by, standby, stir-fry, string tie, supply, swear by, terai, test-fly, thereby, tie-dye, titi, tongue-tie, Transkei, twist tie, two-ply, untie, vat dye, Versailles, walleye, well-nigh, whereby, whitefly, wild rye, wise guy


noun al·ly \ˈa-ˌlī, ə-ˈlī\

: a country that supports and helps another country in a war

the Allies : the nations that fought together against Germany in World War I or World War II

: a person or group that gives help to another person or group

plural al·lies

Full Definition of ALLY

:  a sovereign or state associated with another by treaty or league
:  a plant or animal linked to another by genetic or taxonomic proximity
:  one that is associated with another as a helper :  auxiliary

Examples of ALLY

  1. fought with the Allies in World War II
  2. She's counting on her allies in the state legislature.
  3. When the Soviets pulled out in early 1989, the ensuing power vacuum turned former allies into enemies. The Muslim fighters known as mujahideen, who were unified in their struggle against the Soviets, disbanded and fought one another for control of Kabul in a devastating civil war. —Jiffer Bourguignon, Saveur, March 2008

Origin of ALLY

(see 1ally)
First Known Use: 1598

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism


Next Word in the Dictionary: -allyPrevious Word in the Dictionary: all–worldAll Words Near: ally
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