- to let sink; lower.
- Archaic. to take off or doff (one's hat), as in respect or submission.
Origin of vail1
1300–50; Middle English valen, aphetic variant of avalen (now obsolete) < Middle French avaler to move down, verbal derivative of phrase a val down (literally, to the valley) (a to (< Latin ad) + val vale)
- to be of use or profit; avail.
- a tip; gratuity.
Origin of vail2
1250–1300; Middle English; aphetic variant of avail
- a veil.
- to veil.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for vailing
Historical Examples of vailing
- to lower (something, such as a weapon), esp as a sign of deference or submission
- to remove (the hat, cap, etc) as a mark of respect or meekness
Word Origin for vail
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
- an archaic word for avail
- 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
"advantage, profit," early 15c., from vail (v.) "to be of use or service" (c.1300), from Old French vail, from valoir "to be of value or worth" (see value (n.)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper