Main definitions of slay in English

: slay1slay2

slay1

verbslew, slayed, slain

  • 1archaic, literary with object Kill (a person or animal) in a violent way.

    ‘St George slew the dragon’
    • ‘She did just that and on a day in August slew the beast, just as St. George did the Dragon.’
    • ‘‘It looked like a big, dirty white dog,’ says motorcycle cop Paul Lucier, who slew the beast on St-Joseph.’
    • ‘In the same sector, on the evening of February 22, 2003, a dog was slain by the beast that prowls the Candelero Abajo Sector.’
    • ‘They crawled out, brushed one another clean, slid the saloon-pistols down a trouser-leg, and hurried forth to a deep and solitary Devonshire lane in whose flanks a boy might sometimes slay a young rabbit.’
    • ‘In certain African tribes, one had to slay a lion to prove one's manhood.’
    murder, killing, homicide, putting to death, execution, butchery, slaughter, massacre, assassination, dispatch, destruction, extermination
    kill, murder, put to death, do to death, put to the sword, butcher, cut down, cut to pieces, slaughter, massacre, shoot down, gun down, mow down, assassinate, execute, dispatch, destroy, eliminate, annihilate, exterminate, dispose of
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    1. 1.1North American Murder (someone)
      ‘a man was slain with a shotgun’
      • ‘Barnes was slain in a double murder one week before the Baltimore Ravens selected Lewis in the first round of the 1996 NFL draft.’
      • ‘Michael Mitchell had a satisfying little existence going until the tragic day his son was slain in a gangland shootout.’
      • ‘Those with less time will be better off with Andromache, the story of a woman forced to marry her husband's murderer to prevent him slaying her son.’
      • ‘He was killed when his plane was shot down and that only encouraged the Hutu militia to slay Tutsi men, women and children, anywhere they could find them.’
      kill, murder, put to death, do to death, put to the sword, butcher, cut down, cut to pieces, slaughter, massacre, shoot down, gun down, mow down, assassinate, execute, dispatch, destroy, eliminate, annihilate, exterminate, dispose of
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  • 2informal with object Greatly impress or amuse (someone)

    ‘you slay me, you really do’
    • ‘It's Saturday night, you want to go to the movies, every single one of them will sort of amuse you but not one of them is going to slay you.’
    • ‘One thing that slew me about Warburton's performance as the Tick: instead of the constant bluster of the cartoon voice, he would occasionally drop to a hushed tones that were pure Adam West.’
    • ‘After the title track slays you with its intro - a minute plus of sweet guitar licks - the dual, give-and-take boy-girl lead vocals will capture your heart until you're screaming along without even knowing the words.’
    • ‘Even though I think 80s music was pretty bad, the nostalgia's slaying me every time.’
    • ‘This group, the godfathers of World music, slayed me in '71 with their eponymous debut album.’
    • ‘The catchphrase was delivered with a look of saucer-eyed amazement which slayed the studio audience every time.’
    • ‘It's the usual laughably inane business, but this one part slayed me with its sheer genius.’
    • ‘If I hadn't got them autographs and they'd found out I'd been in the great woman's orbit, they'd have slain me.’
    • ‘Even if he had slain the government on tax cuts, he could not have won.’
    • ‘And she's an eccentric Aquarius, which slays me every time.’
    make an impression on, have an impact on, influence, affect, leave a mark on, move, stir, rouse, excite, inspire, galvanize
    amuse greatly, convulse with laughter, convulse with mirth, entertain greatly, make someone laugh
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    1. 2.1no object Be extremely impressive, stylish, or successful.
      ‘she slayed in a jumpsuit’
      ‘you slayed at this quiz’
      • ‘Beyoncé slayed at Coachella earlier this year.’
      • ‘She didn't really come to play. She came to slay! ’
      • ‘The sparkle in these scarlet shades is subtle but slays all day.’
      • ‘ It wouldn't really be a red carpet, if they didn't come to slay.’
      • ‘The four-year-old poodle seriously slays in his doggie coat which he wears everywhere.’
      • ‘A senior class in Michigan came to slay on picture day.’
      • ‘Rihanna slayed in a lime green leopard print lingerie set that is the very definition of sexy.’
      • ‘She slayed the red carpet in an all-black outfit at the red carpet.’
      • ‘The dancing diva of Texas is back and ready to slay.’
      • ‘The singer slayed in a tiny white slip dress complete with sneakers.’

Origin

Old English slēan ‘strike, kill’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch slaan and German schlagen.

Pronunciation

slay

/sleɪ/

Main definitions of slay in English

: slay1slay2

slay2

noun

variant spelling of sley