One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Early 20th century: pet form of the given name William.
A sudden outburst of anger or annoyance.
chuck (or throw) a willy
informal Display sudden anger.‘he chucks a willy when I ask him if he is ready to say sorry’
- ‘Royce'd throw a willy if he caught you out here.’
- ‘Maynard will chuck a willy if you compare them to each other.’
- ‘Most receivers just don't like the cloud storage, and chuck a willy.’
- ‘Although you have cast dispersions on my integrity, I will not throw a willy.’
- ‘"Are you quite certain you didn't put it there? Innocently, I mean, just hoping she'd throw a willy."’
1930s: perhaps from willy-willy.
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