[ wind-fawl ]
/ ˈwɪndˌfɔl /


an unexpected gain, piece of good fortune, or the like.
something blown down by the wind, as fruit.


accruing in unexpectedly large amounts: windfall profits.

Origin of windfall

late Middle English word dating back to 1425–75; see origin at wind1, fall Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for windfall

British Dictionary definitions for windfall

/ (ˈwɪndˌfɔːl) /


a piece of unexpected good fortune, esp financial gain
something blown down by the wind, esp a piece of fruit
mainly US and Canadian a plot of land covered with trees blown down by the wind
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

Cultural definitions for windfall


An unexpected profit from a business or other source. The term connotes gaining huge profits without working for them — for example, when oil companies profit from a temporary scarcity of oil.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.