Definitions

from The American HeritageĀ® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A heavily spiced stew of meat, vegetables, and chickpeas.
  • n. A mixture or medley; a hodgepodge.
  • n. A collection of various artistic or literary works or musical pieces; a miscellany.
  • n. Vaudeville or musical entertainment presented between the acts of a burlesque or minstrel show.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A rich, thick, Spanish stew consisting of meat and vegetables.
  • n. A mixture or medley, a hotchpotch.
  • n. A collection of various musical, theatrical or other artistic works; a miscellany.
  • n. By extension of the above, Vaudeville or similar miscellaneous musical or theatrical entertainment skits presented between the main acts of minstrel or burlesque shows.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A dish of stewed meat of different kinds.
  • n. A mixture; a medley.
  • n. A collection of miscellaneous pieces.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A savory dish composed of a great variety of ingredients, as stewed meat, herbs, etc.
  • n. A mixture; a medley.
  • n. A miscellany; a collection of various pieces: chiefly applied to a musical collection.

Etymologies

Alteration of Spanish olla, pot; see olla.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Spanish olla or Portuguese olha, both from Latin ollaĀ ("pot, jar"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • By that time the sediment in olio nuovo will have begun to oxidize in a dark pool at the bottom of the bottle, and the oil will become rancid.

    Domestic Reserves

  • We don ' t learn from Mr. Martin why actors and comedians refer to such little routines as " olio " acts.

    You

  • After each show there would be " a ten-minute ' olio ' segment, " with an actor or two coming out to perform their specialties.

    You

  • Behind the tormentors is a curtain called the "olio," which fulfills the triple purpose of hiding the rest of the stage, serving as scenery for acts in One and often as a curtain to raise and lower on acts playing in the space back of One.

    Writing for Vaudeville

  • "brightest eyes that ever have shone" glitter yet more gloriously, till in their nearer and dearer splendor a Chaldean would forget the stars; and the "sweetest lips that ever were kissed" sip the creaming Verzenay, or savor the delicate "olio," with a keener honesty of zest.

    Border and Bastille

  • The simplest and most basic of all pasta suppers, spaghettini aglio e olio is made from ingredients most of us have in the cupboard.

    Nigel Slater's classic spaghettini aglio e olio

  • Cupboard love: Nigel Slater's classic spaghettini aglio e olio.

    Nigel Slater's classic spaghettini aglio e olio

  • Anyhow, my favorite quick/healthy/easy meal as of late is usually some sort of variation on the olio e aglio pasta (oil and garlic).

    Weeknight Meal: Scrambled Pasta

  • While the Kinshaya envoy, Patriarch Radrigi, remained conspicuously mute, the Gorn, Tholian, and Breen diplomats filled the room with a discordant olio of hisses, chirps and clicks, and electronic warbles.

    Star Trek: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts of Empire

  • I could make a little aglio e olio pasta with garlic and olive oil.

    John Turturro

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Comments

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  • Italian - oil.

    November 1, 2008

  • As, added he, now only ask your carrier what sort of a man I am. By all the powers of seasoning! I would defy the best cook in Madrid or Toledo to make an olio at all to be compared to mine.

    - Lesage, The Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillane, tr. Smollett, bk 10 ch. 12

    October 10, 2008

  • Miscellany; potpourri. (from Phrontistery)

    May 24, 2008