a male child, from birth to the age of puberty; a lad; hence, a son. My only boy fell by the side of great Dundee. (Sir W. Scott)
boy is often used as a term of comradeship, as in college, or in the army or navy. In the plural used colloquially of members of an assosiaton, fraternity, or party. Boy bishop, a boy (usually a chorister) elected bishop, in old Christian sports, and invested with robes and other insignia. He practiced a kind of mimicry of the ceremonies in which the bishop usually officiated. The old boy, the devil. Yellow boys, guineas. Boy’s love, a popular english name of southernwood (artemisia abrotonum);) called also lads love. Boy’s play, childish amusements; anything trifling.
Origin: cf. D. Boef, Fries. Boi, boy; akin to g. Bube, Icel. Bofi rouge.