General English


  • noun an act of firing several weapons at the same time, in order to produce a concentration of fire
  • verb to fire several guns together


  • verb to hit or kick a ball before it touches the ground

Origin & History of “volley”

A volley is etymologically a ‘flight’ of something, such as missiles. The word comes via Old French volee from vulgar Latin *volāta ‘flight’, which was a noun use of the feminine past participle of Latin volāre ‘fly’ (source also of English volatile (17th c.)). The origins of this are not certain, although it may be distantly related to Sanskrit garutmant- ‘bird’. The use of volley as a sporting term for a ‘shot hit before the ball bounces’ dates from the 19th century.