gal·ley / ˈgalē/ • n. (pl. -leys) 1. hist. a low, flat ship with one or more sails and up to three banks of oars, chiefly used for warfare, trade, and piracy. ∎ a long rowboat used as a ship's boat.2. the kitchen in a ship or aircraft.3. (also galley proof) a printer's proof in the form of long single-column strips, not in sheets or pages.