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See also: Holy, holý, and hồ ly



From Middle English holi, hali, from Old English hāliġ, hāleġ (holy, consecrated, sacred, venerated, godly, saintly, ecclesiastical, pacific, tame), from Proto-Germanic *hailagaz (holy, bringing health), from Proto-Germanic *hailaz (healthy, whole), from Proto-Indo-European *kóh₂ilus (healthy, whole), equivalent to whole +‎ -y. Cognate with Scots haly (holy), West Frisian hillich (holy), Low German hillig (holy), Dutch heilig (holy), German heilig (holy), Danish hellig (holy), Swedish helig (holy). More at whole.



holy (comparative holier, superlative holiest)

  1. Dedicated to a religious purpose or a god.
    I'm planning to visit the holy city of Jerusalem this Christmas.
  2. Revered in a religion.
  3. Perfect or flawless.
  4. Separated or set apart from (something unto something or someone else).
  5. Set apart or dedicated for a specific purpose, or for use by a single entity or person.
  6. (slang) Used as an intensifier in various interjections.
    Holy cow, I can’t believe he actually lost the race!
    Those children next door are holy terrors!



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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


holy (plural holies)

  1. (archaic) A thing that is extremely holy; used almost exclusively in Holy of Holies.
    • Franz von Reber, Joseph Thacher Clarke, History of Ancient Art (1882) p. 146:
      The holy of holies, a cubical space of ten cubits on the side, was separated from the larger antechamber by four columns, which were also covered with gold and stood upon silver sockets; they bore a second curtain of four colors.

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