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90s Slang You Should Know


[tey-ling] /ˈteɪ lɪŋ/
the part of a projecting stone or brick tailed or inserted in a wall.
  1. Building Trades. gravel, aggregate, etc., failing to pass through a given screen.
  2. the residue of any product, as in mining; leavings.
Origin of tailing
First recorded in 1640-50; tail1 + -ing1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for tailings
Historical Examples
  • The "Henwife" finds "light wheats or tailings the best grain for daily use, and next to that barley."

    Poultry Hugh Piper
  • In this case provision should be made for tailings, dams, or slime pits.

    Getting Gold J. C. F. Johnson
  • Then, later, the area was covered over by tailings from the mine, leaving only the horizontal pipe.

    The Blue Ghost Mystery Harold Leland Goodwin
  • For every reason, the tailings should be kept as low as possible.

    Farm Engines and How to Run Them James H. Stephenson
  • If silver is contained in the ore, it is found among the tailings in the filter, in a chloride which is insoluble in water.

  • Refuse material from quartz, hydraulic or other mines is known as tailings.

    The A B C of Mining Charles A. Bramble
  • While they still wandered about, talking of "tailings" and "nuggets," they were startled by the peal of a bell.

  • I don't want nothing to work up the tailings of my mine, me!

    The Quality of Mercy W. D. Howells
  • So all of value is saved, and the worthless "tailings" go to the dump.

    Stories of California Ella M. Sexton
  • It terminated at what was obviously a great mound of "tailings."

    The Triumph of John Kars Ridgwell Cullum
British Dictionary definitions for tailings


plural noun
waste left over after certain processes, such as from an ore-crushing plant or in milling grain


the part of a beam, rafter, projecting brick or stone, etc, embedded in a wall
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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