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  1. present participle of belly


bellying (not comparable)

  1. Bulging or billowing.
    • 1908 October, Kenneth Grahame, chapter 9, in The Wind in the Willows, New York, N.Y.: Charles Scribner’s Sons, OCLC 305520:
      Did it change into the cry of the wind, plaintive at first, angrily shrill as it freshened, rising to a tearing whistle, sinking to a musical trickle of air from the leech of the bellying sail?
    • 1922 October 26, Virginia Woolf, chapter 12, in Jacob’s Room, Richmond, London: [] Leonard & Virginia Woolf at the Hogarth Press, OCLC 19736994; republished London: The Hogarth Press, 1960, OCLC 258624721:
      And the light mounts over the faces of all the tall blind houses, slides through a chink and paints the lustrous bellying crimson curtains []
    • 1925, Hugh Walpole, Portrait of a Man with Red Hair, Part I, Chapter 6,[1]
      He looked at the stout bellying occupant of the other chair, his mouth open, his snores reverberant.
    • 1950, Mervyn Peake, Gormenghast, London: Eyre & Spottiswoode, Chapter 17,
      As he swept out of the room with a bellying sweep of his gown and a toss of his silver hair, his old heart was beating madly.


bellying (plural bellyings)

  1. A bulging, swelling or billowing shape; the act or state of bulging, swelling or billowing.
    • 1693, Simon de la Loubère, A New Historical Relation of the Kingdom of Siam, translated by A.P., London: Tho. Horne, Part II, Chapter II. Of the Houses of the Siamese, and of their Architecture in Publick Buildings, page 32,[2]
      But the Principal Ornament of the Pagodes, is to be accompanied, as generally they are, with several Pyramids of Lime and Brick [] Some there are which diminish and grow thick again four or five times in their heighth, so that the Profile of them goes waving: But these Bellyings out are smaller as they are in a higher part of the Pyramid.
    • 1873, Gerard Manley Hopkins, “Sunset,” Diary entry dated 3 November, 1873, in The Dublin Review, July, August, September, 1920, p. 64,[3]
      A few minutes later the brightness over; one great dull rope coiling overhead sidelong from the sunset, its dewlaps and bellyings painted with a maddery campion-colour that seemed to stoop and drop like sopped cake;
    • 1898, H. G. Wells, The War of the Worlds, Book One, Chapter 15,[4]
      One may picture, too, the sudden shifting of the attention, the swiftly spreading coils and bellyings of that blackness advancing headlong, towering heavenward, turning the twilight to a palpable darkness []
    • 1926, Violet Hunt, The Flurried Years, London: Hurst & Blackett, “1910-11,” p. 161,[5]
      The room into which I was ushered, with its leering volutes and hideous bellyings of brown mahogany, intimately reminded me of a Beardsley drawing.