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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
avail
I.noun
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ An increasingly concerned international community also sounded the alarm, but to no avail.
▪ But effort and reason were to no avail.
▪ He rebooted my system several times, but to no avail.
▪ I bombarded the War Office, and importuned the Red Cross; but all to no avail.
▪ I have been looking for a recipe for sometime now, but to no avail.
▪ Reverend Jones had asked Mrs Cooper to return to the flock, to no avail.
▪ The mist also shrouded the fish and we thrashed away mightily, to no avail.
▪ This is a misconception that forest ecologists have for years been at pains to correct, but to little avail.
II.verb
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ NOUN
opportunity
▪ As to whether, and if so how, Parliament cares to avail itself of this opportunity, the Act is silent.
▪ Stratton availed himself of neither opportunity.
▪ It was undesirable to make an order which would in practice be executed before the defendant could avail himself of that opportunity.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ A formal hearing may be dispensed with if the parties do not wish to avail themselves of their right to have one.
▪ But what has it availed me?
▪ Gaining New Clients - How to avail yourself of the opening of all public contracts to businesses throughout the Community.
▪ It availed me not at all.
▪ It demonstrates that in the post-Cold War world, middle powers can avail themselves of new power to build coalitions.
▪ It is an opportunity of which they have availed themselves to varying degrees.
▪ To minimize how this price is perceived, the self-defeating organization can avail itself of any of the techniques described here.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Avail

Avail \A*vail"\, v. i. To be of use or advantage; to answer the purpose; to have strength, force, or efficacy sufficient to accomplish the object; as, the plea in bar must avail, that is, be sufficient to defeat the suit; this scheme will not avail; medicines will not avail to check the disease. ``What signs avail ?''
--Milton.

Words avail very little with me, young man.
--Sir W. Scott.

Avail

Avail \A*vail"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Availed (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Availing.] [OE. availen, fr. F. ? (L. ad) + valoir to be worth, fr. L. valere to be strong, to be worth. See Valiant.]

  1. To turn to the advantage of; to be of service to; to profit; to benefit; to help; as, artifices will not avail the sinner in the day of judgment.

    O, what avails me now that honor high !
    --Milton.

  2. To promote; to assist. [Obs.]
    --Pope.

    To avail one's self of, to make use of; take advantage of.

    Then shall they seek to avail themselves of names.
    --Milton.

    I have availed myself of the very first opportunity.
    --Dickens.

Avail

Avail \A*vail"\, v. t. & i. See Avale, v. [Obs.]
--Spenser.

Avail

Avail \A*vail"\, n.

  1. Profit; advantage toward success; benefit; value; as, labor, without economy, is of little avail.

    The avail of a deathbed repentance.
    --Jer. Taylor.

  2. pl. Proceeds; as, the avails of a sale by auction.

    The avails of their own industry.
    --Stoddard.

    Syn: Use; benefit; utility; profit; service.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
avail

c.1300, availen, apparently a French compound formed in English from Old French a- "to" (see ad-) + vailen "to avail," from vaill-, present stem of valoir "be worth," from Latin valere (see valiant). Related: Availed; availing. As a noun, from c.1400.

Wiktionary
avail

n. (lb en obsolete) benefit; value, profit; advantage toward success. (15th-19thc.) vb. 1 (context transitive often reflexive English) To turn to the advantage of. 2 (context transitive English) To be of service to. 3 (context transitive English) To promote; to assist. 4 (context intransitive English) To be of use or advantage; to answer or serve the purpose; to have strength, force, or efficacy sufficient to accomplish the object. 5 (context India Africa elsewhere proscribed English) To provide; to make available.

WordNet
avail
  1. n. a means of serving; "of no avail"; "there's no help for it" [syn: help, service]

  2. v. use to one's advantage; "He availed himself of the available resources"

  3. be of use to, be useful to; "It will avail them to dispose of their booty"

  4. take or use; "She helped herself to some of the office supplies" [syn: help]

Wikipedia
Avail

Avail was a punk rock band from Richmond, Virginia. Originally from Reston, Va. the band formed in 1987, its members including Joe Banks, Doug Crosby, Brien Stewart, and Mikey Warstler. The only original remaining member, guitar player Joe Banks, teamed up with rival band LDK's (Learning Disabled Kids) Tim Barry. They moved to Richmond in 1990, and soon, after numerous line up changes, put together a solid lineup to release their first album "Satiate" in 1992. Many of their lyrics center on Richmond. The band released six studio albums.

The band has never officially disbanded, but has not released new material since 2002 and not played live since late 2007.

Usage examples of "avail".

At that moment I saw Petronio going by, and availing myself of a moment when the officer was talking to someone, I told him not to appear to be acquainted with me, but to tell me where he lived.

Constitution which precludes Congress from making criminal the violation of an administrative regulation, by one who has failed to avail himself of an adequate separate procedure for the adjudication of its validity, or which precludes the practice, in many ways desirable, of splitting the trial for violations of an administrative regulation by committing the determination of the issue of its validity to the agency which created it, and the issue of violation to a court which is given jurisdiction to punish violations.

Lady Afy, and tell her how much I regret I cannot avail myself of her most friendly invitation.

It was mainly in condemnation of the Alien and Sedition Laws, then so unpopular everywhere, that these resolutions were professedly fulminated, but they gave to the agitating Free Traders a States-Rights-Secession-weapon of which they quickly availed themselves.

That war and its resulting policy of extra-territorial expansion, so far from hindering the process of domestic amelioration, availed, from the sheer force of the national aspirations it aroused, to give a tremendous impulse to the work of national reform.

It has availed itself of these great examples to such good purpose that the average of reputable verse written to-day is more instinct with feeling, more vitalised with thought, more satisfying in expression, than much which is studied and belauded and quoted because it was written a century or two ago.

The absence of Colenbrander in the Rustenburg country gave Beyers a chance of which he was not slow to avail himself.

Welt and Bryk and their immediate underlings swivelled in their seats in an attempt to search out the guilty parties, but to no avail.

Sir James be not well enough versed in the use of sword and buckler to overcome Sir Malud, for even were his strength the strength of ten men it shall avail him naught without the skill to use it.

Bettina being alone, availed herself of the opportunity, came to my room and sat down on my bed.

I only met with empty space, and I could not help laughing at the rapidity with which Angela had availed herself of the opportunity of escaping me.

She had been anxious to have friends, but she had dismissed all lovers, refusing to avail herself of a privilege which she could easily have enjoyed, but which would have rendered her contemptible in her own estimation.

I could not help laughing at the contrivance, which struck me as at once ingenious and diabolical, but I could not make up my mind to avail myself of it.

CHAPTER 11 They Come to the Vale of Sweet Chestnuts When they went on their way next morning they found little change in the pass, and they rode the dread highway daylong, and it was still the same: so they rested a little before nightfall at a place where there was water running out of the rocks, but naught else for their avail.

The invitation was polite, perhaps it was sincere, yet I did not avail myself of it, and they were glad of it.