[teyl; French tah-yuh]

noun, plural tailles [teylz; French tah-yuh] /teɪlz; French ˈtɑ yə/.

French History. a tax that was levied by a king or seigneur on his subjects or on lands held under him and that became solely a royal tax in the 15th century from which the lords and later the clergy were exempt.
(in dressmaking) the waist or bodice of a garment.
Obsolete. the shape of one's body from shoulders to waist; figure; build.

Origin of taille

1545–55; < French: literally, a cutting; see tail2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for taille

Historical Examples of taille

  • And with all this the taille is exacted with military severity.

  • I will have a garment reach to my taille; Then am I a minion, for I wear the new guise.

    The Romany Rye

    George Borrow

  • It is also called by Bach, Taille de basson, or tenor of the bassoon.


    Charles Francis Abdy Williams

  • Or parts are written for a viola and a taille (the tenor viol).


    Charles Francis Abdy Williams

  • They want us to pay some of the taxes—the corvée or the taille.

    Petticoat Rule

    Emmuska Orczy, Baroness Orczy

British Dictionary definitions for taille


noun plural tailles (taɪ, taɪz, French tɑj)

(in France before 1789) a tax levied by a king or overlord on his subjects

Word Origin for taille

C17: from French, from Old French taillier to shape; see tailor
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