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See also: Tally



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Etymology 1Edit

Clipping of tallyho.




  1. (radio, aviation) Target sighted.
    (Air Traffic Control): Speedbird 123, New York, traffic at two o’clock, seven miles, a Boeing 737, west-bound, at 4000 feet.”
    (Pilot): New York, Speedbird 123, tally.

Usage notesEdit

In aviation radio usage, more common than original tallyho. In civilian aviation usage, the official term for “traffic sighted” is “traffic in sight”.[1]


Etymology 2Edit

From Middle English talie, from Anglo-Norman tallie and Old French taille (notch in a piece of wood signifying a debt), from Medieval Latin tallia, from Latin talea (a cutting, rod, stick).


tally (plural tallies)

  1. Originally, a piece of wood on which notches or scores were cut, as the marks of number
  2. Later, one of two books, sheets of paper, etc., on which corresponding accounts were kept.
  3. Hence, any account or score kept by notches or marks, whether on wood or paper, or in a book, especially one kept in duplicate.
    • 2011 September 2, Phil McNulty, “Bulgaria 0-3 England”, in BBC[1]:
      Bulgaria, inevitably, raised the tempo in the opening moments of the second half and keeper Joe Hart was forced into his first meaningful action to block a deflected corner - but England were soon threatening to add to their goal tally.
  4. One thing made to suit another; a match; a mate.
    • Dryden
      They were framed the tallies for each other.
  5. A notch, mark, or score made on or in a tally; as, to make or earn a score or tally in a game.
  6. A tally shop.
  7. A ribbon on a sailor's cap bearing the name of the ship or the (part of) the navy to which they belong.

See alsoEdit


Etymology 3Edit

From Middle English talien, from the noun (see above).


tally (third-person singular simple present tallies, present participle tallying, simple past and past participle tallied)

  1. (transitive) To count something.
  2. (transitive) To record something by making marks.
  3. (transitive) To make things correspond or agree with each other.
    • Alexander Pope
      They are not so well tallied to the present juncture.
  4. (intransitive) To keep score.
  5. (intransitive) To correspond or agree.
    • Addison
      I found pieces of tiles that exactly tallied with the channel.
    • Walpole
      Your idea [] tallies exactly with mine.
  6. (nautical) To check off, as parcels of freight going inboard or outboard.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of W. C. Russell to this entry?)

Derived termsEdit


Etymology 4Edit

From Middle English tally, talliche, equivalent to tall +‎ -ly.


tally (comparative more tally, superlative most tally)

  1. (obsolete) In a tall way; stoutly; with spirit.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Beaumont and Fletcher to this entry?)


  • tally in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911
  • tally at OneLook Dictionary Search
  1. ^ Federal Aviation Administration: Pilot/Controller Glossary (P/CG), T (Traffic)