ban·dy | \ˈban-dē \
bandied; bandying

Definition of bandy 

(Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to bat (something, such as a tennis ball) to and fro

2a : to toss from side to side or pass about from one to another often in a careless or inappropriate manner A gun is not a toy to be bandied about.

b : exchange bandy compliments especially : to exchange (words) argumentatively

c : to discuss lightly or banteringly Names of potential running mates have been bandied about.

d : to use in a glib or offhand manner often used with about bandy these statistics about with considerable bravado— Richard Pollak

3 archaic : to band together

intransitive verb

1 obsolete : contend

2 archaic : unite



Definition of bandy (Entry 2 of 3)

sports : a game similar to hockey and believed to be its prototype



Definition of bandy (Entry 3 of 3)

1 of legs : bowed

2 : bowlegged … stood beyond the bandy table …— Dylan Thomas

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Other Words from bandy


bandy-legged \ˈban-dē-ˌlegd; ˌban-dē-ˈle-gəd, -ˈlā- \ adjective

Examples of bandy in a Sentence


bandied around the idea of going out to dinner for their anniversary

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

On this issue of protecting our most basic rights, conservatives and liberals came together, when so often they are bandied about between right and left. John Timpane,, "Eliza Griswold's 'Amity and Prosperity': Fracking, profit, and human costs in western Pa.," 28 June 2018 Other names being bandied about include Erdem, Burberry and Alexander McQueen; the last of those labels was responsible for the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding dress in 2011. Karen Yossman,, "Who made Meghan Markle's wedding dress? Few know for sure, but bookmakers put the odds on Ralph & Russo," 18 May 2018 Over-the-top dollar figures are often bandied about more as attention getters than as a bar for realistic value. Roger Vincent,, "Paul Allen puts a $150-million price on storied acreage in Beverly Crest," 11 July 2018 It has not yet been disclosed how much the transfer will be worth although a £60m fee is the number which has been bandied about., "Reports Claim French Star Set to Complete His Liverpool Medical on Friday Ahead of Summer Transfer," 7 June 2018 Regulatory concerns have been bandied about on the right. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, "How Conservatives Are Hoodwinking Big Tech," 29 June 2018 One factor being bandied about for Houston is James' friendship with Chris Paul, who is expected to re-sign with the Rockets. Reid Laymance, Houston Chronicle, "James Harden on LeBron James: It's about business, family," 25 June 2018 Names of prospective replacements for Mr. Kelly, including members of Congress and the cabinet, have been bandied about outside the White House. Maggie Haberman, New York Times, "Trump’s Impromptu News Conference: An Unplanned Drop-By or a Deliberate Dig?," 25 Jan. 2018 While proposals about separating California have been bandied about for years, Golden State voters will have their say on this particular initiative in November. Madison Park, CNN, "Initiative to break California into 3 states to go on November ballot," 13 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

So naturally, Duchess Kate, who played field hockey while attending school, had to give the sport a try during her first official visit to Sweden, picking up bandy sticks during a stop in Stockholm with Prince William on Tuesday. Maeve Mcdermott, USA TODAY, "Pregnant Duchess Kate plays 'bandy hockey' in Sweden," 30 Jan. 2018 The flask was brought in a bandy portfolj, a briefcase that traditionally contains a flask of warm wine or coffee laced with alcohol. Simon Perry,, "Pregnant Kate Middleton Boldly Hits the Ice as She Rounds Her Third Trimester," 30 Jan. 2018 During their royal tour of Sweden, the couple stopped by an ice rink to learn more about bandy hockey (the Swedish sport is like traditional hockey, but played with a curved stick and a ball). Elise Taylor, Vogue, "Kate Middleton Challenges Prince William to a Swedish Hockey Shoot-Out," 30 Jan. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

On the first day of their official visit to Sweden, Prince William and Kate Middleton met up with their hosts (and Swedish counterparts!), Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel after a morning spent watching (and playing a bit of) bandy hockey. Simon Perry,, "Future Queens! Kate Middleton Twins in Faux Fur with Her Swedish Counterpart, Princess Victoria," 30 Jan. 2018 Just turn to Kate Middleton and Prince William, who were photographed playing a little bandy hockey on Tuesday in Stockholm, Sweden. Peggy Truong, Cosmopolitan, "Just 15 Delightful Photos of a Pregnant Kate Middleton Playing Hockey in Sweden," 30 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bandy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bandy


1577, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1673, in the meaning defined above


1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bandy


probably borrowed from the base of French bander "to strike (a ball with a racket), stretch or draw back (a bow, spring, etc.)," going back to Old French, "to stretch, wrap with bandages," verbal derivative of bande "strip, band entry 1"

Note: The origin of the suffix -y, -ie is unclear. The noun bandie referring to a variation of tennis is of the same date and suggests a putative Middle French bandé or bandée, but no such word is attested.


earlier, "a variety of tennis," probably noun derivative of bandy entry 1

Note: See note at bandy entry 1.


perhaps from bandy "curved stick used in the game of bandy," apparently a sense of bandy entry 2

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Phrases Related to bandy

bandy about

bandy words

Statistics for bandy

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Time Traveler for bandy

The first known use of bandy was in 1577

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More Definitions for bandy


ban·dy | \ˈban-dē \

Medical Definition of bandy 

1 of legs : bowed outward at or below the knee

2 : bowlegged

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Comments on bandy

What made you want to look up bandy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to reject or criticize sharply

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