Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “willy-nilly”

See all translations

willy-nilly

adverb uk   /ˌwɪl.iˈnɪl.i/ informal us  
If something happens willy-nilly, it happens even if the people who are involved do not want it to happen: Both sides were drawn, willy-nilly, into the conflict. without any order: She threw her clothes willy-nilly into a drawer.
Translations of “willy-nilly”
in Chinese (Traditional) 不管願不願意, 無可奈何地, 雜亂地…
in Chinese (Simplified) 不管愿不愿意, 无可奈何地, 杂乱地…
(Definition of willy-nilly from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of willy-nilly?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “willy-nilly” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

piglet

a baby pig

Word of the Day

I won’t tolerate it! Replacing formal words with phrasal verbs.

by Liz Walter,
April 01, 2015
When you are using a language, it is important to understand if a word is formal or informal, so that you can use it in an appropriate way. You might hear people saying dosh for money, or spud for potato, but they wouldn’t write those words in a formal essay. Similarly, a

Read More 

stackin’ p

March 30, 2015
idiom slang earning a lot of money ‘That’s a very generous present.”Yeah, well, she’s stackin’ p, innit?’

Read More