Word of the Day: Holy, Holey and Wholly



ho-ly  /  -lē


adjective (holy, holier, holiest)


  1. sacred; divine; pertaining to God or a deity

O Holy Spirit, descend plentifully into my heart.

Saint Augustine, 354 – 430


  1. regarded with reverence or designated for religious use

They are not all saints who use holy water.

English Proverb


  1. godly; filled with spiritual devotion and high morals

Holy wisdom confounds Satan and all his wickednesses.

Francis of Assisi, 1182 – 1226


  1. possessing extreme purity

There is a holy love and a holy rage, and our best virtues never glow so brightly as when our passions are excited in the cause.

Charles Caleb Colton, 1780 – 1832


  1. considered as deserving special respect and awe

Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow.

Helen Keller, 1880 – 1968


  1. (informal) used to add emphasis, an intensifier

He was a holy terror when he drank!

From “Of Time and the River” by Thomas Wolfe, 1900 – 1938





hol-ey  /  -lē


adjective (holy, holier, holiest)


  1. full of holes, containing holes

I darned my holey tan cashmere stockings.

From “Miss Million’s Maid” by Berta Ruck, 1878 – 1978





whol-ly  /  -lē, hōl-




  1. entirely, completely

There are few things wholly evil or wholly good.

Abraham Lincoln, 1809 – 1865


  1. exclusively, fully, to the exclusion of other things

Lose yourself wholly; and the more you lose, the more you will find.

St. Catherine of Siena, 1347 – 1380