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n. pl. lob·lol·lies
1. Chiefly Southern US A mudhole; a mire.
2. The loblolly pine.
[Perhaps dialectal lob, to bubble + lolly, broth.]
Word History: In some regional dialects of the American South, the term loblolly is used to refer to a mire or mudhole. The word is a combination of lob, probably an onomatopoeic word suggesting the thick heavy bubbling of cooking porridge, and lolly, an old British dialect word meaning "broth, soup, or any other food boiled in a pot." Thus, loblolly originally denoted thick porridge or gruel, especially that eaten by sailors onboard ship. The meaning of the word in American dialects of the South makes allusion to the consistency of such porridge. The name loblolly has become associated with several varieties of trees as well, all of which favor wet bottomlands or swamps in the Gulf and South Atlantic states. Among these is the loblolly pine (Pinus taeda), whose strong wood is used as lumber and for paper pulp.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
n, pl -lies
1. (Plants) a southern US pine tree, Pinus taeda, with bright red-brown bark, green needle-like leaves, and reddish-brown cones
2. (Nautical Terms) nautical a thick gruel
3. (Physical Geography) dialect US a mire; mudhole
[C16: perhaps from dialect lob to boil + obsolete dialect lolly thick soup]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
n., pl. -lies.
1. South Midland and Southern U.S. a mire; mudhole.
2. a thick gruel.
[1590–1600; compare dial. (Yorkshire) lob (of porridge) to bubble while boiling; second element is obscure]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.