rail

1
[ reyl ]
/ reɪl /
||

noun

verb (used with object)

to furnish or enclose with a rail or rails.

Origin of rail

1
1250–1300; Middle English raile < Old French raille bar, beam < Latin rēgula bar, straight piece of wood, regula
Related formsrail·less, adjectiverail·like, adjective

Definition for rail (2 of 3)

rail

2
[ reyl ]
/ reɪl /

verb (used without object)

to utter bitter complaint or vehement denunciation (often followed by at or against): to rail at fate.

verb (used with object)

to bring, force, etc., by railing.

Origin of rail

2
1425–75; late Middle English railen < Middle French railler to deride < Provençal ralhar to chatter < Vulgar Latin *ragulāre, derivative of Late Latin ragere to bray
Related formsrail·er, nounrail·ing·ly, adverb

Definition for rail (3 of 3)

rail

3
[ reyl ]
/ reɪl /

noun

any of numerous birds of the family Rallidae, that have short wings, a narrow body, long toes, and a harsh cry and inhabit grasslands, forests, and marshes in most parts of the world.

Origin of rail

3
1400–50; late Middle English rale < Old French raale (cognate with Provençal rascla), noun derivative of raler < Vulgar Latin *rāsiculāre frequentative of Latin rādere (past participle rāsus) to scratch
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for rail

British Dictionary definitions for rail (1 of 3)

rail

1
/ (reɪl) /

noun

verb (tr)

to provide with a rail or railings
(usually foll by in or off) to fence (an area) with rails
Derived Formsrailless, adjective

Word Origin for rail

C13: from Old French raille rod, from Latin rēgula ruler, straight piece of wood

British Dictionary definitions for rail (2 of 3)

rail

2
/ (reɪl) /

verb

(intr ; foll by at or against) to complain bitterly or vehementlyto rail against fate
Derived Formsrailer, noun

Word Origin for rail

C15: from Old French railler to mock, from Old Provençal ralhar to chatter, joke, from Late Latin ragere to yell, neigh

British Dictionary definitions for rail (3 of 3)

rail

3
/ (reɪl) /

noun

any of various small wading birds of the genus Rallus and related genera: family Rallidae, order Gruiformes (cranes, etc). They have short wings, long legs, and dark plumage

Word Origin for rail

C15: from Old French raale, perhaps from Latin rādere to scrape
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

Idioms and Phrases with rail

rail


see off the rails; thin as a rail; third rail.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.