Word of the Day: hail

Word of the Day
April 19, 2016
hail (verb, noun)
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A woman hailing a cab.
As a noun, hail refers to little pieces of ice that fall from the sky in heavy storms. Figuratively we use it to mean 'a large quantity of anything.' As a verb, it means 'to rain hail' or 'to fall like hail.' However, hail has other meanings as a verb. It also means 'to welcome something very enthusiastically' or 'to attract someone's attention.'

 

Example sentences
 
It was a winter day and Esther looked out of the window at the falling hail.
The teacher's hail of criticism damaged John's confidence.
It had been hailing all day, so they were unable to go out.
The other driver hailed insults on me after I accidentally crashed into her.
Everyone in the town hailed the arrival of the new company and the jobs it brought with it.
After the accident, Bill hailed a passing car to stop and help.

 

Words often used with hail
 
hail from: come from. Example: "Erika lives in Brighton now, but originally she hails from Finland."
hail a cab/taxi: to gesture to a taxi to stop and pick you up. Example: "I live on a busy street so it is always easy to hail a cab."
 
Did you know?
 
Hail Caesar is the English translation of the Latin Ave Caesar. Hail was previously used as a way of greeting someone, but these days that sounds extremely old fashioned, so you are probably better off sticking to "Hello" or "Hi."
 
Origin
 
Hail dates back to the second half of the 12th century and comes from the Old Norse word heill and the Middle English word haile, earlier heilen, a derivative of hail, meaning 'health.'
 
 
 
 
 
Hail in other languages
 
 
 
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