• synonyms


See more synonyms for avail on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to be of use or value to; profit; advantage: All our efforts availed us little in trying to effect a change.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to be of use; have force or efficacy; serve; help: His strength did not avail against the hostile onslaught.
  2. to be of value or profit.
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  1. advantage; use; efficacy; effective use in the achievement of a goal or objective: His belated help will be of little or no avail.
  2. avails, Archaic. profits or proceeds.
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  1. avail oneself of, to use to one's advantage: They availed themselves of the opportunity to hear a free concert.
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Origin of avail

1250–1300; Middle English availe, equivalent to a- a-2 + vaile < Old French vail- (stem of valoir) < Latin valēre to be of worth
Related formsa·vail·ing·ly, adverbun·a·vailed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

satisfy, account, advantage, profit, suffice, work, serve, benefit, meet, answer, fulfill, fill

Examples from the Web for availed

Historical Examples

  • He was yet speaking when Duncan availed himself of the water.

    The Last of the Mohicans

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • I had learned, and I availed myself of the knowledge, that it was born before its time.

    Calderon The Courtier

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • Mr. Fairbanks saw his opportunity and availed himself of it.

  • Neither of you two could ever be sure when, or if at all, he availed himself of that access.

    The Mystery of Murray Davenport

    Robert Neilson Stephens

  • That very evening Dr. Carter availed himself of the invitation.

British Dictionary definitions for availed


  1. to be of use, advantage, profit, or assistance (to)
  2. avail oneself of to make use of to one's advantage
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  1. use or advantage (esp in the phrases of no avail, to little avail)
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Derived Formsavailingly, adverb

Word Origin

C13 availen, from vailen, from Old French valoir, from Latin valēre to be strong, prevail
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

Word Origin and History for availed



c.1300, availen, apparently a French compound formed in English from Old French a- "to" (see ad-) + vailen "to avail," from vaill-, present stem of valoir "be worth," from Latin valere (see valiant). Related: Availed; availing. As a noun, from c.1400.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with availed


In addition to the idiom beginning with avail

  • avail oneself of

also see:

  • to no avail
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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.