adjective, tall·er, tall·est.
- seemly; proper.
- fine; handsome.
- talking picture,
- talking point,
- talking shop,
- tall blacks,
- tall buttercup,
- tall drink,
- tall meadow rue,
- tall oil
Origin of tall
Examples from the Web for tall
Also, she was tall and thin, too, further adding to the ways she met the physical beauty conventions.Why Was Bess Myerson the First and Last Jewish Miss America?|Emily Shire|January 7, 2015|DAILY BEAST
But when she called back, Brinsley was determined to tall her about his minted screenwriter status.
It had a wide brim and a tall crown, which created an insulated pocket of air and could also be used to carry water.
A tugboat improbably sits high on the bank, obscured by tall grass, a broken oil rig hangs over the water nearby.
It was headquartered in Stanleyville, in a tall corner building that still stands in the decrepit, yet lively, downtown.
His brother Olaf was a tall, thin man; handsome in countenance; lively, modest, and popular.Heimskringla|Snorri Sturlason
Don Gesualdo had gone across the rough grass of the garden, and had passed out of sight beyond the tall hedge of rose-laurel.
Beside it, a tall needle of rock, serrated and sharp, shot up.My New Curate|P.A. Sheehan
His tall, straight form, erect and slim, swung toward them over the ice.
He was short rather than tall, his hand was delicate, his foot slender and elegant.The Companions of Jehu|Alexandre Dumas, pre
- (postpositive) having a specified heighta woman five feet tall
- (in combination)a twenty-foot-tall partition
Word Origin for tall
"high in stature," 1520s, probably ultimately from Old English getæl "prompt, active." Sense evolved to "brave, valiant, seemly, proper" (late 14c.), then to "attractive, handsome" (mid-15c.), and finally "being of more than average height." The Old English word is related to Old High German gi-zal "quick," Gothic un-tals "indocile."
Sense evolution is remarkable, but adjectives applied to persons often mutate quickly in meaning (e.g. pretty, buxom, German klein "small, little," which in Middle High German meant the same as its English cognate clean). Meaning "exaggerated" (as in tall tale) is American English colloquial attested by 1846. Phrase tall, dark, and handsome is recorded from 1906.
In addition to the idioms beginning with tall
- tall order
- tall tale
- walk tall