wail

[ weyl ]
/ weɪl /

verb (used without object)

verb (used with object)

to express deep sorrow for; mourn; lament; bewail: to wail the dead; to wail one's fate.
to express in wailing; cry or say in lamentation: to wail one's grief.

noun

Origin of wail

1300–50; Middle English weile (v. and noun), perhaps derivative of Old English weilā(wei) well-away; compare Old English wǣlan to torment, Old Norse wǣla to wail
Related formswail·er, nounwail·ing·ly, adverbun·wailed, adjectiveun·wail·ing, adjective
Can be confusedwail whale
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for wailing

British Dictionary definitions for wailing

wail

/ (weɪl) /

verb

(intr) to utter a prolonged high-pitched cry, as of grief or misery
(intr) to make a sound resembling such a crythe wind wailed in the trees
(tr) to lament, esp with mournful sounds

noun

a prolonged high-pitched mournful cry or sound
Derived Formswailer, nounwailful, adjectivewailfully, adverb

Word Origin for wail

C14: of Scandinavian origin; related to Old Norse vǣla to wail, Old English woe
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