vail

1
[ veyl ]

verb (used with object)
  1. to let sink; lower.

  2. Archaic. to take off or doff (one's hat), as in respect or submission.

Origin of vail

1
First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English valen, vaile “to subside, sink,” shortened variant of avalen, awalen, availen (now obsolete), from Middle French avaler “to move down,” derived from the phrase a val “down” (literally, ”to the valley”), equivalent to a “to” (from Latin ad ) + val vale)

Words Nearby vail

Other definitions for vail (2 of 3)

vail2
[ veyl ]

verb (used with or without object)
  1. to be of use or profit to someone; avail.

noun
  1. a tip; gratuity.

Origin of vail

2
First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English vailen, vaille, valen, shortened variant of avail

Other definitions for vail (3 of 3)

vail3
[ veyl ]

noun
  1. a veil.

verb (used with object)
  1. to veil.

Origin of vail

3
First recorded in 1350–1400

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use vail in a sentence

  • Yet Faith penetrates the vail and sees the glorious land of promise—the inheritance of our race.

    Gospel Philosophy | J. H. Ward
  • But to her surprise the man sitting at the table in the sitting-room, and reading the newspaper, was not Wise but Mr vail.

    In the Onyx Lobby | Carolyn Wells
  • He was vail's tool, by reason of past historic incidents, and the scheme had been planned by the two conspirators.

    In the Onyx Lobby | Carolyn Wells
  • My land, Jane vail could of had her choice of the town, where she comes from.

    Jane Journeys On | Ruth Comfort Mitchell
  • "It's rare and fine to have you back, Jane vail," he said, glowing with gladness.

    Jane Journeys On | Ruth Comfort Mitchell

British Dictionary definitions for vail (1 of 3)

vail1

/ (veɪl) /


verb(tr) obsolete
  1. to lower (something, such as a weapon), esp as a sign of deference or submission

  2. to remove (the hat, cap, etc) as a mark of respect or meekness

Origin of vail

1
c14 valen, from obsolete avalen, from Old French avaler to let fall, from Latin ad vallem, literally: to the valley, that is, down, from ad to + vallis valley

British Dictionary definitions for vail (2 of 3)

vail2

/ (veɪl) /


noun, verb
  1. an archaic word for avail

British Dictionary definitions for vail (3 of 3)

vail3

/ (veɪl) /


noun, verb
  1. an archaic spelling of veil

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