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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Veil \Veil\ (v[=a]l), n. [OE. veile, OF. veile, F. voile, L. velum a sail, covering, curtain, veil, probably fr. vehere to bear, carry, and thus originally, that which bears the ship on. See Vehicle, and cf. Reveal.] [Written also vail.]

  1. Something hung up, or spread out, to intercept the view, and hide an object; a cover; a curtain; esp., a screen, usually of gauze, crape, or similar diaphnous material, to hide or protect the face.

    The veil of the temple was rent in twain.
    --Matt. xxvii. 51.

    She, as a veil down to the slender waist, Her unadorn['e]d golden tresses wore.

  2. A cover; disguise; a mask; a pretense.

    [I will] pluck the borrowed veil of modesty from the so seeming Mistress Page.

  3. (Bot.)

    1. The calyptra of mosses.

    2. A membrane connecting the margin of the pileus of a mushroom with the stalk; -- called also velum.

  4. (Eccl.) A covering for a person or thing; as, a nun's veil; a paten veil; an altar veil.

  5. (Zo["o]l.) Same as Velum, 3.

    To take the veil (Eccl.), to receive or be covered with, a veil, as a nun, in token of retirement from the world; to become a nun.


Veil \Veil\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Veiled; p. pr. & vb. n. Veiling.] [Cf. OF. veler, F. voiler, L. velarc. See Veil, n.] [Written also vail.]

  1. To throw a veil over; to cover with a veil.

    Her face was veiled; yet to my fancied sight, Love, sweetness, goodness, in her person shined.

  2. Fig.: To invest; to cover; to hide; to conceal.

    To keep your great pretenses veiled.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"advantage, profit," early 15c., from vail (v.) "to be of use or service" (c.1300), from Old French vail, from valoir "to be of value or worth" (see value (n.)).


n. 1 (surname) 2 A CDP in Arizona 3 A town in Colorado 4 A city in Iowa

Vail, AZ -- U.S. Census Designated Place in Arizona
Population (2000): 2484
Housing Units (2000): 906
Land area (2000): 18.205051 sq. miles (47.150863 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 18.205051 sq. miles (47.150863 sq. km)
FIPS code: 78540
Located within: Arizona (AZ), FIPS 04
Location: 32.001939 N, 110.700286 W
ZIP Codes (1990): 85641
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Vail, AZ
Vail, CO -- U.S. town in Colorado
Population (2000): 4531
Housing Units (2000): 5389
Land area (2000): 4.535670 sq. miles (11.747331 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 4.535670 sq. miles (11.747331 sq. km)
FIPS code: 80040
Located within: Colorado (CO), FIPS 08
Location: 39.635757 N, 106.362984 W
ZIP Codes (1990): 81657
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Vail, CO
Vail, IA -- U.S. city in Iowa
Population (2000): 452
Housing Units (2000): 196
Land area (2000): 0.559407 sq. miles (1.448857 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 0.559407 sq. miles (1.448857 sq. km)
FIPS code: 80130
Located within: Iowa (IA), FIPS 19
Location: 42.061061 N, 95.202423 W
ZIP Codes (1990): 51465
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Vail, IA
Vail (disambiguation)

Vail commonly refers to Vail, Colorado and the Vail Ski Resort located there.

Vail may also refer to:

Vail (surname)

Vail is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

  • Aaron Vail (1796–1878), U.S. diplomat
  • Alfred Vail (1807–1859), U.S. machinist and inventor
  • Anna Murray Vail 1863–1955), U.S. botanist and first librarian of the New York Botanical Garden
  • Benjamin A. Vail (1844–1924), U.S. jurist and politician
  • Bob Vail (1881–1942), U.S. baseball pitcher
  • Charles H. Vail (1866–1924), U.S. Universalist clergyman, Christian socialist, political activist, and writer
  • Edwin Arnold Vail (1817–1885), Canadian physician and political figure
  • Eric Vail (born 1953), Canadian ice hockey player
  • Fred Vail ( 1903–1914), U.S. sports coach
  • George Vail (1809–1875), U.S. New Jersey politician
  • Harry Vail (died 1928), U.S. rowing coach
  • Henry Vail (1782–1853), U.S. New York State politician
  • Ira Vail (1893–1979), Canadian-born U.S. race car driver
  • Louis Vail ( 1894), U.S. football coach
  • Melville Vail (1906–1983), Canadian ice hockey player
  • Mike Vail (born 1951), U.S. baseball player
  • Myrtle Vail (also as Myrtle Damerel; 1888–1978), U.S. actress and writer
  • Nathan Russell Vail (1825–1888), U.S. mine operator, landowner, and politician
  • Pegeen Vail Guggenheim (1925–1967), Swiss-born French painter
  • Peter Vail (born 1930), U.S. geologist and geophysicist
  • Pyotr Vail (Пётр Львович Вайль; 1949–2009) Latvian-born Russian writer, editor, and radio executive
  • Rachel Vail (born 1966), U.S. children and young adults genre author
  • Richard B. Vail (1895–1955), U.S. Illinois politician
  • Silas Jones Vail (1818–1883), U.S. hatmaker and hymn composer
  • Stephen Vail (1780–1864), U.S. rail and metal forge businessman
  • Theodore Newton Vail (1845–1920), U.S. telephony industrialist
  • Theresa Vail (born 1990), U.S. beauty pageant contestant ("Miss Kansas" 2013)
  • Thomas Hubbard Vail (1821–1889), U.S. Episcopalian bishop
  • Tobi Vail (born 1969), U.S. musician, music critic, and feminist activist; formerly of the band Bikini Kill
  • William Berrian Vail (1823–1904), Canadian businessman and politician
  • William Vail (born 1950), U.S. set decorator and actor

Usage examples of "vail".

Sometimes Tortha Karf or Verkan Vail would punch one of these, and read, on an adjoining screen, the explanatory matter referred to.

Fifth-Level North America, it had been taken to the First Level and placed in the Dhergabar Zoological Gardens, and then, requisitioned on the authority of Tortha Karf, it had been brought to the Fourth Level by Verkan Vail.

First Level city of Dhergarbar, Tortha Karf, Chief of Paratime Police, leaned forward in his chair to hold his lighter for his special assistant, Verkan Vail, then lit his own cigarette.

Tortha Karf was explaining to Vail just where and on what paratemporal sector Kharanda was spoken.

Vail and Tortha Karf were talking cop talk about method of operation and possible size of the gang involved, and why the slaves had been shipped all the way from India to the west coast of North America.

As Vail and Tortha Karf and Dalla walked over, the car which had brought them lifted out.

Tortha Karf, who had been looking at the man in Proletarian dress whom Vail had killed first, turned, looked in another direction, and then cursed.

Vail and Dalla and Tortha Karf and four or five others looked across the desk and to the end of the room as the telecast screen broke into a shifting light-pattern and then cleared.

Western Union at Loma Blanca, to the south and hence closer to where Billy Vail had ordered him to go in the first damned place.

Once El Paso had been known as Franklin, and Billy Vail had served with the Ranger company that had been headquartered here in those days.

She dropped him a courtesy with an uplook and again a vailing of her wicked eyes.

Jane Venable before him, Vail had little respect for Yancey as a litigator but liked him personally.

It is the story of great men--Morse, Thomson, Bell, Marconi, and others--and how, with the aid of men like Field, Vail, Catty, Pupin, the scientist, and others in both the technical and commercial fields, they succeeded in flashing both messages and speech around the world, with wires and without wires.

Vail since he entered the big room, watching the minglers part like water before him, congratulate him, pat him on the back, then swirl back to continue their conversations in his wake.

At first, Vail thought that Salgath Trod had been brought in disguised as a Prole prisoner, and then he saw that the prisoner was short and stocky, not at all like the slender and elegant politician.