Definition of medley in English:


Syllabification: med·ley
Pronunciation: /ˈmedlē

noun (plural medleys)

1A varied mixture of people or things; a miscellany: an interesting medley of flavors
More example sentences
  • For main course I had calves liver, nice and pink, on haggis mash with caramelised shallots and boudin blanc with a beef jus, a splendid medley of complementary flavours.
  • His hot climate allows peaches with a low chill requirement to develop a medley of complex flavors.
  • Thick, juicy cod fillets are steamed over water that is intensely flavoured with a medley of spices, fresh herbs and aromatics.
1.1A collection of songs or other musical items performed as a continuous piece: a medley of Beatles songs
More example sentences
  • This group of 20 singers have been together for five years and will perform a medley of Christmas songs and classical pieces.
  • They performed a medley of well known songs that got the crowd going.
  • The final piece on the program was a medley of folk songs from Canada's various provinces, and went on a bit too long.
1.2A swimming race in which contestants swim sections in different strokes, either individually or in relay teams.
More example sentences
  • I used to swim medleys at national age groups but I concentrated more on freestyle as I got older.
  • Apparently, ever since a female umpire disqualified him from the individual medley at a swimming gala he'd found it difficult to deal with older women.
  • The individual medley provided the Games with the first ever swimming champion from Zimbabwe.


archaic Back to top  
Mixed; motley: a medley range of vague and variable impressions

verb (past and past participle medleyed or medlied)

[with object] archaic Back to top  
Make a medley of; intermix.


Middle English (denoting hand-to-hand combat, also cloth made of variegated wool): from Old French medlee, variant of meslee 'melee', based on medieval Latin misculare 'to mix'; compare with meddle.

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