Definition of Limey noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈlaɪmi//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪmi//
(old-fashioned, North American English)
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a slightly insulting word for a British person Culture The word 'Limey' was used especially by US military forces during the Second World War, often as an insult, to mean a British sailor or soldier. It refers to the old practice in the British navy of drinking the juice of limes (= green fruit like lemons) to avoid getting the disease of scurvy which is caused by the lack of vitamin C. Word Origin late 19th cent.: from lime (the fruit) + -y, because of the former enforced consumption of lime juice in the British navy.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: Limey