[ awl ]
See synonyms for awl on
  1. a pointed instrument for piercing small holes in leather, wood, etc.

Origin of awl

before 900; Middle English al, eal, aul,Old English al, eal, æl; cognate with Old Norse alr; akin to Middle English ēl,Old English ǣl,Old High German āla (German Ahle), Sanskrit ā́rā

Words that may be confused with awl

Other definitions for A.W.L. (2 of 2)


  1. absent with leave. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use awl in a sentence

  • That there Native Son throws on a-w-l-together too much dog to really get out and do anything.

    Flying U Ranch | B. M. Bower
  • I think I shall be able to d-r-a-w-l like him by two oclock to-morrow, when he leaves.

    Old Times in Dixie Land | Caroline E. Merrick
  • For instance, "I shall always address you in your own S-n-i-v-e-l-i-n-g d-r-a-w-l, baby."

British Dictionary definitions for awl


/ (ɔːl) /

  1. a pointed hand tool with a fluted blade used for piercing wood, leather, etc: See also bradawl

Origin of awl

Old English ǣl; related to Old Norse alr, Old High German āla, Dutch aal, Sanskrit ārā

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