tails

[ teylz ]
/ teɪlz /

adjective, adverb

(of a coin) with the reverse facing up: On the next toss, the coin came up tails.Compare heads.

noun

QUIZZES

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PUNCTUATION QUIZ

Punctuation marks help make writing easy to read and understand. Some of the most important ones are the period (.), comma (,), question mark (?), and exclamation point (!). How well do you know how to use them? Find out in this quiz!
Question 1 of 10
Which punctuation mark is best for this sentence? "Can I watch a movie __"

Origin of tails

First recorded in 1675–85; tail1 + -s1

Definition for tails (2 of 3)

Origin of tail

1
before 900; Middle English; Old English tægl; cognate with Old Norse tagl horse's tail, Gothic tagl hair, Middle High German zagel tail, Middle Low German tagel rope-end

usage note for tail

The meanings “sexual intercourse” and “female sexual partner” are both vulgar slang. When referring to a person, the term tail is usually used with disparaging intent and perceived as insulting.

OTHER WORDS FROM tail

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH tail

tail tale

Definition for tails (3 of 3)

tail2
[ teyl ]
/ teɪl /
Law.

noun

the limitation of an estate to a person and the person’s heirs or some particular class of such heirs.

adjective

limited to a specified line of heirs; entailed.

Origin of tail

2
1200–50; (noun) Middle English taille < Old French, derivative of taillier to cut < Late Latin tāliāre (see tailor1); (adj.) late Middle English taille < Anglo-French tailé cut, shaped, limited, past participle of tailler

OTHER WORDS FROM tail

tail·less, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for tails

British Dictionary definitions for tails (1 of 3)

tails
/ (teɪlz) /

pl n

an informal name for tail coat

interjection, adverb

with the reverse side of a coin uppermost: used as a call before tossing a coinCompare heads

British Dictionary definitions for tails (2 of 3)

tail1
/ (teɪl) /

noun

verb

Derived forms of tail

tailless, adjectivetaillessly, adverbtaillessness, nountail-like, adjective

Word Origin for tail

Old English tægel; related to Old Norse tagl horse's tail, Gothic tagl hair, Old High German zagal tail

British Dictionary definitions for tails (3 of 3)

tail2
/ (teɪl) property law /

noun

the limitation of an estate or interest to a person and the heirs of his bodySee also entail

adjective

(immediately postpositive) (of an estate or interest) limited in this way

Derived forms of tail

tailless, adjective

Word Origin for tail

C15: from Old French taille a division; see tailor, tally
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

Medical definitions for tails

tail
[ tāl ]

n.

The posterior part of an animal, especially when elongated and extending beyond the trunk or main part of the body.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for tails

tail
[ tāl ]

The rear, elongated part of many animals, extending beyond the trunk or main part of the body. Tails are used variously for balance, combat, communication, mating displays, fat storage, propulsion and course correction in water, and course correction in air.
A long, stream of gas or dust forced from the head of a comet when it is close to the Sun. Tails can be up to 150 million km (93 million miles) long, and they always point away from the Sun because of the force of the solar wind.Plasma tails, or ion tails, appear bluish and straight and narrow, and are formed when solar wind forces ionized gas to stream off the coma. Dust tails are wide and curved, and are formed when solar heat forces trails of dust off the coma; solid particles reflecting the Sun's light create their bright yellow color.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with tails

tail

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