Definition of slyly in English:



  • 1In a cunning and deceitful or manipulative manner.

    ‘he slyly manipulates votes’
    • ‘Upset over the turn of events, they slyly have her removed from their home, leaving both the maid and the young daughter distraught.’
    • ‘A brief portion featured the pair chattering about the pitfalls of marriage while slyly manoeuvering around a kitchen table.’
    • ‘He uses extremely creative images of the devil and demons in order to slyly subvert our expectations.’
    • ‘He slyly begins to manipulate the situation by playing Cyrano for both youngsters.’
    • ‘The great genius behind this storyline was that Ward was slyly biting the hand that fed him.’
    • ‘The imperious, self-involved mother dotes over her baby girl's hair and slyly inveigles the child to continue with her brilliant career as a shoplifter.’
    • ‘He slyly let the students' horse loose while they were grinding the corn, forcing them to rush after it, forgetting the meal.’
    • ‘The film is cleverly, almost slyly, political.’
    • ‘After slyly gaining entrance to the castle and accidentally saving the king from an assassination attempt, he is given prestige and title by the thankful ruler.’
    • ‘During a picnic, she slyly offers to massage his feet.’
    1. 1.1 In a way that suggests some secret knowledge that may be harmful or embarrassing; knowingly.
      ‘the president smiled slyly, unable to mask a look of triumph’
      • ‘The mathematician proudly gave his answer, glancing at me slyly out of the corner of his eye, as if he had outdone me in some way.’
      • ‘He's nodding slyly at the secular sanctity of the pub.’
      • ‘She marched right into class, sat down, and slyly waved at all her friends from last year.’
      • ‘As we roam the streets, they slyly peep at us and challenge us in 20 different guises.’
      • ‘She laughed, a bit slyly, bending her head to one side.’
      • ‘"And among them," he adds, winking slyly, "is an author familiar to you both."’
      • ‘While the title character holds up a big VHS tape, you can grin slyly, knowing that you're watching this film on glorious DVD.’
      • ‘She lets him do the talking while slyly poking a little fun at him along the way.’
      • ‘As its slyly punning title suggests, this 1999 documentary is Herzog's tribute to his doppelganger.’
      • ‘His mother looks around slyly, with a little smile on her face.’