- a loud, prolonged ringing of bells.
- a set of bells tuned to one another.
- a series of changes rung on a set of bells.
- any loud, sustained sound or series of sounds, as of cannon, thunder, applause, or laughter.
- to sound loudly and sonorously: to peal the bells of a tower.
- Obsolete. to assail with loud sounds.
- to sound forth in a peal; resound.
Origin of peal
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for peal
At that moment, to his excessive astonishment, the organ began to peal forth.The Channings
Mrs. Henry Wood
Sometimes all the bells which compose a peal tell their various uses.English Villages
P. H. Ditchfield
A moment of stunned quiet had succeeded the peal of thunder.The Gentleman From Indiana
Our eyes met, and Adelaide burst into a peal of harsh laughter.The First Violin
Ned never forgot the peal of laughter which came from his parents.
- a loud prolonged usually reverberating sound, as of bells, thunder, or laughter
- bell-ringing a series of changes rung in accordance with specific rules, consisting of not fewer than 5000 permutations in a ring of eight bells
- (not in technical usage) the set of bells in a belfry
- (intr) to sound with a peal or peals
- (tr) to give forth loudly and sonorously
- (tr) to ring (bells) in peals
- a dialect name for a grilse or a young sea trout
Word Origin and History for peal
mid-14c., "a ringing of a bell" especially as a call to church service, generally considered a shortened form of appeal (n.), with the notion of a bell that "summons" people to church (cf. similar evolution in peach (v.)). Extended sense of "loud ringing of bells" is first recorded 1510s.
1630s, from peal (n.). Related: Pealed; pealing.