• synonyms


See more synonyms for weal on Thesaurus.com
  1. well-being, prosperity, or happiness: the public weal; weal and woe.
  2. Obsolete. wealth or riches.
  3. Obsolete. the body politic; the state.
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Origin of weal1

before 900; Middle English wele, Old English wela; akin to well1


  1. wheal.
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Origin of weal2

variant of wale1, with ea of wheal
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

streak, wale, scar, ridge, wound, bruise, stripe, mouse, injury, contusion, whelk, wheal, abundance, prosperity, good, advantage, success, contentment, profit, ease

Examples from the Web for weal

Historical Examples

  • In the woe or weal of a whole life, we must decide for ourselves.

    Alice, or The Mysteries, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • As heaven's above, his future weal Or woe depends upon my silence!

    Browning's England

    Helen Archibald Clarke

  • And the real end of both was the weal of the Commonwealth at large.

  • How much of Canada's weal or woe depends upon the selection?

    The Story of My Life

    Egerton Ryerson

  • Has it not done more for the honor of the prince and the weal of the subject than any other system?

British Dictionary definitions for weal


  1. a raised mark on the surface of the body produced by a blowAlso called: wale, welt, wheal
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Word Origin

C19: variant of wale 1, influenced in form by wheal


  1. archaic prosperity or wellbeing (now esp in the phrases the public weal, the common weal)
  2. obsolete the state
  3. obsolete wealth
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Word Origin

Old English wela; related to Old Saxon welo, Old High German wolo
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

Word Origin and History for weal


"well-being," Old English wela "wealth," in late Old English also "welfare, well-being," from West Germanic *welon, from PIE root *wel- "to wish, will" (see will (v.)). Related to well (adv.).

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"raised mark on skin," 1821, alteration of wale (q.v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

weal in Medicine


  1. A ridge on the flesh raised by a blow; a welt.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.