Jelly vs Nelly - What's the difference?

jelly | nelly |

As a noun jelly

is (new zealand|australia|british) a dessert made by boiling gelatine, sugar and some flavouring (often derived from fruit) and allowing it to set.

As a verb jelly

is to wiggle like jelly.

As an adjective jelly

is (slang) jealous.

As a proper noun nelly is

a spelling variant of nellie, a diminutive of the female given names eleanor and helen.



(wikipedia jelly)

Alternative forms

* gelly (obsolete)

Etymology 1

(etyl) gelee, from .


  • (New Zealand, Australia, British) A dessert made by boiling gelatine, sugar and some flavouring (often derived from fruit) and allowing it to set.
  • (label) A clear or translucent fruit preserve, made from fruit juice and set using either naturally occurring, or added, pectin.
  • * 1945 , (Fannie Merritt Farmer) and (Wilma Lord Perkins) revisor, The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book , Eighth edition:
  • Perfect jelly is of appetizing flavor; beautifully colored and translucent; tender enough to cut easily with a spoon, yet firm enough to hold its shape when turned from the glass.
  • * 1975 , and (Marion Rombauer Becker), The Joy of Cooking , 5th revision:
  • Jelly has great clarity. Two cooking processes are involved. First, the juice alone is extracted from the fruit. Only that portion thin and clear enough to drip through a cloth is cooked with sugar until sufficiently firm to hold its shape. It is never stiff and never gummy.
  • A similar dish made with meat.
  • calf's-foot jelly
  • (zoology)
  • A pretty girl; a girlfriend.
  • * 1931 , William Faulkner, Sanctuary , Vintage 1993, p. 25:
  • ‘Gowan goes to Oxford a lot,’ the boy said. ‘He?s got a jelly there.’
  • (US, slang) A large backside, especially a woman's.
  • * 2001 , (w, Destiny's Child), “(Bootylicious)” (song)
  • I shake my jelly at every chance / When I whip with my hips you slip into a trance
  • * 2001 , George Dell, Dance Unto the Lord , page 94:
  • At that Sister Samantha seemed to shake her jelly so that she sank back into her chair.
  • (colloquial)
  • (colloquial) A jelly shoe.
  • * 2006 , David L. Marcus, What It Takes to Pull Me Through :
  • Mary Alice gazed at a picture of herself wearing jellies and an oversized turquoise T-shirt that matched her eyes
    * (dessert made by boiling gelatin) (US) jello, Jell-O * (fruit preserve) jam, marmalade
    Derived terms
    * comb jelly * jellification * jellify * jelly baby * jelly bean * jelly bracelet * jellyfish * jellylike * royal jelly


  • To wiggle like jelly.
  • To make jelly.
  • Etymology 2

    From jealous by shortening.


    (en adjective)
  • (slang) Jealous.
  • * '>citation
  • * 2011 , " Exchange smiles, not saliva", The Banner (Grand Blanc High School), Volume 47, Issue 2, December 2011, page 17:
  • "I think other people make rude comments because they're jelly [jealous] bro," Schroer said. "We're just showing our love to other people."
  • * '>citation
  • *
  • 1000 English basic words



    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.