alley


alley
alley (n.) mid-14c., "passage in a house; open passage between buildings; walkway in a garden," from O.Fr. alee (13c., Mod.Fr. allée) "a path, passage, way, corridor," also "a going," from fem. of ale, pp. of aler "to go," which ultimately may be a contraction of L. ambulare "to walk," or from Gallo-Romance allari, a back formation from L. allatus "having been brought to" [Barnhart]. Cf. sense evolution of GATE (Cf. gate). Applied by c.1500 to "long narrow enclosure for playing at bowls, skittles, etc." Used in place names from c.1500.
The word is applied in Amer.Eng. to what in London is called a MEWS (Cf. mews), and also is used there especially of a back-lane parallel to a main street (1729). To be up someone's alley "in someone's neighborhood" (literally or figuratively) is from 1931; alley-cat attested by 1890.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Alley — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Alphonse Amadou Alley (1930–1987), Präsident von Dahomey (heute: Benin) 1967/68 Candice Alley (* 1983), australische Sängerin und Songwriterin Fred Alley (1963–2001), US amerikanischer Librettist Gene… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • alley — alley1 [al′ē] n. pl. alleys [ME aly < OFr alee < aler (Fr aller), to go < ML alare, contr. < L ambulare, to walk: see AMBLE] 1. a lane in a garden or park, bordered by trees or shrubs 2. a narrow street or walk, specif., a lane behind …   English World dictionary

  • Alley — Al ley, n.; pl. {Alleys}. [OE. aley, alley, OF. al[ e]e, F. all[ e]e, a going, passage, fr. OE. aler, F. aller, to go; of uncertain origin: cf. Prov. anar, It. andare, Sp. andar.] 1. A narrow passage; especially a walk or passage in a garden or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Alley — Al ley, n.; pl. {Alleys}. [A contraction of alabaster, of which it was originally made.] A choice taw or marble. Dickens. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • alley — index way (channel) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • alley — [ˈæli] or alleyway [ˈæliˌweɪ] noun [C] a narrow street or passage between buildings …   Dictionary for writing and speaking English

  • alley — has the plural form alleys …   Modern English usage

  • alley — [n] narrow passage alleyway, back street, lane, passageway, path, pathway, walk; concept 501 …   New thesaurus

  • alley — ► NOUN (pl. alleys) 1) a narrow passageway between or behind buildings. 2) a path in a park or garden. 3) a long, narrow area in which skittles and bowling are played. ORIGIN Old French alee walking or passage , from Latin ambulare to walk …   English terms dictionary

  • Alley — Mårten Trotzigs Gränd, 90 cm wide, the narrowest alley in Gamla stan, Stockholm Alley in downtown …   Wikipedia


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