One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A sheepdog of a breed originating in Scotland, having a long, pointed nose and thick, long hair.
- ‘He has his two sheepdogs - collies Joe and Jeff - hot on his heels.’
- ‘By 1944, the Army accepted only five breeds: German shepherds, Belgian sheepdogs, Doberman pinschers, farm collies, and giant schnauzers.’
- ‘While innate livestock sense is bred into all good working collies, their working style can vary.’
- ‘They have six dogs in training - all pure breed collies trained for competition.’
- ‘For example, when collies became popular pets in the Victorian period, they lost many of the characteristics that made them effective herd dogs.’
Mid 17th century: perhaps from coal (the breed originally being black).
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