- a streak, stripe, or ridge produced on the skin by the stroke of a rod or whip; welt.
- the vertical rib in knit goods or a chain of loops running lengthwise in knit fabric (opposed to course).
- the texture or weave of a fabric.
- any of certain strakes of thick outside planking on the sides of a wooden ship.
- Also called breast timber, ranger, waling. Engineering, Building Trades. a horizontal timber or other support for reinforcing various upright members, as sheet piling or concrete form boards, or for retaining earth at the edge of an excavation.
- a ridge on the outside of a horse collar.
- to mark with wales.
- to weave with wales.
- Engineering, Building Trades. to reinforce or fasten with a wale or wales.
Origin of wale1
- to raise a wale or wales on by striking
- to weave with a wale
- a choice
- anything chosen as the best
- (tr) to choose
Word Origin and History for breast-timber
Old English walu "ridge," as of earth or stone, later "ridge made on flesh by a lash" (related to weal (n.2)); from Proto-Germanic *walo (cf. Low German wale "weal," Old Frisian walu "rod," Old Norse völr "round piece of wood," Gothic walus "a staff, stick," Dutch wortel, German wurzel "root"). The common notion perhaps is "raised line." Used in reference to the ridges of textile fabric from 1580s. Wales "horizontal planks which extend along a ship's sides" is attested from late 13c.
- A mark raised on the skin, as by a whip; a weal or welt.
- To raise marks on the skin, as by whipping.