Nellie vs Nelly - What's the difference?

nellie | nelly | Alternative forms |

Nelly is an alternative form of nellie.



Alternative forms

* Nelly

Proper noun

(en proper noun)
  • A diminutive of the female given names Eleanor and Helen. Popular as a formal given name at the turn of the 20th century.
  • * 1860 Mary Jane Holmes: Cousin Maude . BiblioBazaar,LLC, 2007. ISBN 1434652122 page 14:
  • "Then we will call her Matilda," said he, "as it is a maxim of mine never to spoil children by giving them pet names."
    "But you call your daughter Nellie ," suggested the little widow, and in her soft, blue eye there shone a mischievous twinkle, as if she fancied she had beaten him in his own argument. - - -
    "That is sister Kelsey's idea, and as she is very fond of Nellie I do not interfere.
  • * 2007 Rachel M. Harper: Brass Ankle Blues . Simon&Schuster 2007. ISBN 0743296583 page 88:
  • "Eleanor, that's kind of an old lady name. I like Nellie' better. ' Nellie Kincaid, that's got a nice ring to it. It sounds like you're a singer or something.
    English diminutives of female given names ----



    Etymology 1

    Shortened from Nelly Duff'', for ''puff'', i.e. breath of ''life


    (-) (not used in the plural)
  • (Cockney rhyming slang) Life.
  • Usage notes
    * Used principally in the phrase (not on your nelly).

    Etymology 2

    From the woman's name, Nelly


  • (derogatory, slang) An effeminate homosexual man.
  • (British, slang) A silly person.
  • A common name for the giant petrels, Macronectes giganteus'' and ''Macronectes halli
  • Hyponyms
    * (petrel) Antarctic giant petrel, northern piant petrel, southern giant fulmar, southern giant petrel


  • (slang) Unmanly, effeminate.