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Noun, Verb (usu participle), Verb (transitive), Verb (intransitive), Adjective


Noun tail has 8 senses

Verb tail has 3 senses


tailn. [F. taille a cutting. See Entail, Tally.].
     Limitation; abridgment.  Burrill.  [1913 Webster]
Estate in tail, a limited, abridged, or reduced fee; an estate limited to certain heirs, and from which the other heirs are precluded; -- called also estate tail. Blackstone.
     Limited; abridged; reduced; curtailed; as, estate tail.  [1913 Webster]
tailn. [AS. tægel, tægl; akin to G. zagel, Icel. tagl, Sw. tagel, Goth. tagl hair. √59.].
  •  The terminal, and usually flexible, posterior appendage of an animal.  [1913 Webster]
    " The tail of mammals and reptiles contains a series of movable vertebræ, and is covered with flesh and hairs or scales like those of other parts of the body. The tail of existing birds consists of several more or less consolidated vertebræ which supports a fanlike group of quills to which the term tail is more particularly applied. The tail of fishes consists of the tapering hind portion of the body ending in a caudal fin. The term tail is sometimes applied to the entire abdomen of a crustacean or insect, and sometimes to the terminal piece or pygidium alone."  [1913 Webster]
  •  Any long, flexible terminal appendage; whatever resembles, in shape or position, the tail of an animal, as a catkin.  [1913 Webster]
    "Doretus writes a great praise of the distilled waters of those tails that hang on willow trees."  [1913 Webster]
  •  Hence, the back, last, lower, or inferior part of anything, -- as opposed to the head, or the superior part.  [1913 Webster]
    "The Lord will make thee the head, and not the tail."  [1913 Webster]
  •  A train or company of attendants; a retinue.  [1913 Webster]
    "“Ah,” said he, “if you saw but the chief with his tail on.”"  [1913 Webster]
  •  The side of a coin opposite to that which bears the head, effigy, or date; the reverse; -- rarely used except in the expression “heads or tails,” employed when a coin is thrown up for the purpose of deciding some point by its fall.  [1913 Webster]
  •  The distal tendon of a muscle.  [1913 Webster]
  •  A downy or feathery appendage to certain achenes. It is formed of the permanent elongated style.  [1913 Webster]
  •  A portion of an incision, at its beginning or end, which does not go through the whole thickness of the skin, and is more painful than a complete incision; -- called also tailing.  [1913 Webster]
  •  A rope spliced to the strap of a block, by which it may be lashed to anything.  [1913 Webster]
  •  The part of a note which runs perpendicularly upward or downward from the head; the stem.  Moore (Encyc. of Music).  [1913 Webster]
  •  Same as Tailing, 4.  [1913 Webster]
  •  The bottom or lower portion of a member or part, as a slate or tile.  [1913 Webster]
  •  See Tailing, n., 5.  [1913 Webster]
  •  the long visible stream of gases, ions, or dust particles extending from the head of a comet in the direction opposite to the sun.  [PJC]
  •  In some forms of rope-laying machine, pieces of rope attached to the iron bar passing through the grooven wooden top containing the strands, for wrapping around the rope to be laid.  [Webster 1913 Suppl.]
  •  A tailed coat; a tail coat.  [Webster 1913 Suppl.]
  •  In airplanes, an airfoil or group of airfoils used at the rear to confer stability.  [Webster 1913 Suppl.]
  •  the buttocks.  [PJC]
  •  sexual intercourse, or a woman used for sexual intercourse; as, to get some tail; to find a piece of tail. See also tailing{3}.  [PJC]
    "Would she turn tail to the heron, and fly quite out another way; but all was to return in a higher pitch."  [1913 Webster]
Tail beam. (Arch.) Same as Tailpiece. -- Tail coverts (Zoöl.), the feathers which cover the bases of the tail quills. They are sometimes much longer than the quills, and form elegant plumes. Those above the quills are called the upper tail coverts, and those below, the under tail coverts. -- Tail end, the latter end; the termination; as, the tail end of a contest. [Colloq.] -- Tail joist. (Arch.) Same as Tailpiece. -- Tail of a comet (Astron.), a luminous train extending from the nucleus or body, often to a great distance, and usually in a direction opposite to the sun. -- Tail of a gale (Naut.), the latter part of it, when the wind has greatly abated. Totten. -- Tail of a lock (on a canal), the lower end, or entrance into the lower pond. -- Tail of the trenches (Fort.), the post where the besiegers begin to break ground, and cover themselves from the fire of the place, in advancing the lines of approach. -- Tail spindle, the spindle of the tailstock of a turning lathe; -- called also dead spindle. -- To turn tail, to run away; to flee.
tailv. t. 
  •  To follow or hang to, like a tail; to be attached closely to, as that which can not be evaded.  [1913 Webster]
    "Nevertheless his bond of two thousand pounds, wherewith he was tailed, continued uncanceled, and was called on the next Parliament."  [1913 Webster]
  •  To pull or draw by the tail.  Hudibras.  [1913 Webster]
To tail in or To tail on (Arch.), to fasten by one of the ends into a wall or some other support; as, to tail in a timber.
tailv. i. 
  •  To hold by the end; -- said of a timber when it rests upon a wall or other support; -- with in or into.  [1913 Webster]
  •  To swing with the stern in a certain direction; -- said of a vessel at anchor; as, this vessel tails down stream.  [1913 Webster]
Tail on. (Naut.) See Tally on, under Tally.


tail, n. & v.
1 the hindmost part of an animal, esp. when prolonged beyond the rest of the body.
2 a a thing like a tail in form or position, esp. something extending downwards or outwards at an extremity. b the rear end of anything, e.g. of a procession. c a long train or line of people, vehicles, etc.
3 a the rear part of an aeroplane, with the tailplane and rudder, or of a rocket. b the rear part of a motor vehicle.
4 the luminous trail of particles following a comet.
5 a the inferior or weaker part of anything, esp. in a sequence. b Cricket the end of the batting order, with the weakest batsmen.
6 a the part of a shirt below the waist. b the hanging part of the back of a coat.
7 (in pl.) colloq. a a tailcoat. b evening dress including this.
8 (in pl.) the reverse of a coin as a choice when tossing.
9 colloq. a person following or shadowing another.
10 an extra strip attached to the lower end of a kite.
11 the stem of a note in music.
12 the part of a letter (e.g. y) below the line.
13 a the exposed end of a slate or tile in a roof. b the unexposed end of a brick or stone in a wall.
14 the slender backward prolongation of a butterfly's wing.
15 a comparative calm at the end of a gale.
16 a calm stretch following rough water in a stream.
1 tr. remove the stalks of (fruit).
2 tr. & (foll. by after) intr. colloq. shadow or follow closely.
3 tr. provide with a tail.
4 tr. dock the tail of (a lamb etc.).
5 tr. (often foll. by on to) join (one thing to another).

on a person's tail closely following a person. tail back (of traffic) form a tailback. tail covert any of the feathers covering the base of a bird's tail feathers. tail-end
1 the hindmost or lowest or last part.
2 (sense 5 of the n.). tail-ender a person at the tail-end of something, esp. in cricket and athletic races. tail in fasten (timber) by one end into a wall etc. tail-light (or -lamp) US a light at the rear of a train, motor vehicle, or bicycle.
tail off (or away)
1 become fewer, smaller, or slighter.
2 fall behind or away in a scattered line. tail-off n. a decline or gradual reduction, esp. in demand. tail-race the part of a mill-race below the water-wheel. tail-skid a support for the tail of an aircraft when on the ground. tail wind a wind blowing in the direction of travel of a vehicle or aircraft etc. with one's tail between one's legs in a state of dejection or humiliation. with one's tail up in good spirits; cheerful.
tailed adj. (also in comb.). tailless adj.
tail, n. & adj. Law
--n. limitation of ownership, esp. of an estate limited to a person and that person's heirs.
--adj. so limited (estate tail; fee tail).

in tail under such a limitation.
ME f. OF taille notch, cut, tax, f. taillier cut ult. f. L talea twig



n. The part of an animal's spine that has transcended its natural limitations to set up an independent existence in a world of its own. Excepting in its foetal state, Man is without a tail, a privation of which he attests an hereditary and uneasy consciousness by the coat-skirt of the male and the train of the female, and by a marked tendency to ornament that part of his attire where the tail should be, and indubitably once was. This tendency is most observable in the female of the species, in whom the ancestral sense is strong and persistent. The tailed men described by Lord Monboddo are now generally regarded as a product of an imagination unusually susceptible to influences generated in the golden age of our pithecan past.



Thule, Ultima Thule, acknowledgments, adherent, affix, aft, after, aftermost, afterpart, afterpiece, allonge, appendage, appendix, arm, arse, ass, attendant, back, back door, back matter, back seat, back side, backside, backward, bastard title, bedog, behind, bibliography, bitter end, bottom, bottom dollar, bough, boundary, braid, branch, breech, brush, buff, bum, bun, butt, butt end, buttocks, can, catch line, catchword, cauda, caudal, caudal appendage, caudate, caudated, caudation, caudiform, cavaliere servente, chase, cheeks, chignon, coda, codicil, coil, colophon, come after, come behind, commentary, conclusive, contents, contents page, copyright page, courtier, croup, cue, dangler, dedication, definitive, dependent, determinative, disciple, dock, dog, enclitic, endleaf, endmost, endpaper, endsheet, envoi, epilogue, errata, eventual, extreme, extremity, eye, fag end, fan, fanny, fantail, farthest, farthest bound, final, flag, flunky, flyleaf, folio, follow, follow a clue, follow up, follower, following, fore edge, foreword, front matter, go after, go behind, half-title page, hand, hanger-on, head, heel, henchman, hind, hind end, hind part, hinder, hindermost, hindhand, hindhead, hindmost, homme de cour, hound, hunt down, imp, imprint, index, infix, inscription, interlineation, interpolation, introduction, joint, jumping-off place, keister, knot, last, leaf, leg, limb, limit, limiting, link, lobe, lobule, makeup, marginalia, member, move behind, nib, nose, nose out, note, occiput, offshoot, organ, page, parasite, partisan, pigtail, pinion, plait, point, polar, pole, posterior, postern, postscript, prat, preface, prefix, preliminaries, proclitic, public, pursue, pursuer, pursuivant, queue, rabbit, ramification, rattail, rear, rear end, rearmost, rearward, recto, retrograde, reverse, reverso, rider, rump, run down, run to earth, runner, running title, rusty-dusty, satellite, scholia, scion, sectary, shadow, signature, smell out, sniff out, spray, sprig, spur, stalk, stern, stooge, string along, stub, stump, subtitle, successor, suffix, supporter, switch, tab, table of contents, tag, tag after, tag along, tag end, tagtail, tail end, tailed, tailgate, taillike, tailpiece, tendril, terminal, terminating, terminative, text, tip, title, title page, topknot, trace, trace down, track, track down, trail, trail after, trailer, train, trainbearer, tread close upon, trim size, tuchis, tush, tushy, twig, twist, type page, ultimate, verso, votary, wake, ward heeler, wing




N adjunct, addition, additament, additum, affix, appelidage, annexe, annex, augment, augmentation, increment, reinforcement, supernumerary, accessory, item, garnish, sauce, accompaniment, adjective, addendum, complement, supplement, continuation, rider, offshoot, episode, side issue, corollary, piece, flap, lappet, skirt, embroidery, trappings, cortege, tail, suffix, wing, additional, alate, alated, winged, in addition.


N sequel, suffix, successor, tail, queue, train, wake, trail, rear, retinue, suite, appendix, postscript, epilogue, peroration, codicil, continuation, sequela, appendage, tail piece, heelpiece, tag, more last words, colophon, aftercome, aftergrowth, afterpart, afterpiece, aftercourse, afterthought, aftergame, arriere pensee, second thoughts, outgrowth.


N end, close, termination, desinence, conclusion, finis, finale, period, term, terminus, endpoint, last, omega, extreme, extremity, gable end, butt end, fag-end, tip, nib, point, tail, verge, tag, peroration, bonne bouche, bottom dollar, tail end, rear guard, consummation, denouement, finish, fate, doom, doomsday, crack of doom, day of Judgment, dies irae, fall of the curtain, goal, destination, limit, determination, expiration, expiry, extinction, extermination, death, end of all things, finality, eschatology, break up, commencement de la fin, last stage, turning point, coup de grace, deathblow, knock-out-blow, sockdolager, ending, final, terminal, definitive, crowning, last, ultimate, hindermost, rear, caudal, vergent, conterminate, conterminous, conterminable, ended, at an end, settled, decided, over, played out, set at rest, conclusive, penultimate, last but one, last but two, unbegun, uncommenced, fresh, finally, in fine, at the last, once for all, as high as Heaven and as deep as hell, deficit omne quod nascitur, en toute chose il faut considerer la fin, finem respice, ultimus Romanorum.


N pendency, dependency, suspension, hanging, pedicel, pedicle, peduncle, tail, train, flap, skirt, pigtail, pony tail, pendulum, hangnail peg, knob, button, hook, nail, stud, ring, staple, tenterhook, fastening, spar, horse, pendent, pendulous, pensile, hanging, beetling, jutting over, overhanging, projecting, dependent, suspended, loose, flowing, having a peduncle, pedunculate, tailed, caudate.


N rear, back, posteriority, rear rank, rear guard, background, hinterland, occiput, nape, chine, heels, tail, rump, croup, buttock, posteriors, backside scut, breech, dorsum, loin, dorsal region, lumbar region, hind quarters, aitchbone, natch, natch bone, stern, poop, afterpart, heelpiece, crupper, wake, train, reverse, other side of the shield, back, rear, hind, hinder, hindmost, hindermost, postern, posterior, dorsal, after, caudal, lumbar, mizzen, tergal, behind, in the rear, in the background, behind one's back, at the heels of, at the tail of, at the back of, back to back, after, aft, abaft, astern, sternmost, aback, rearward, ogni medaglia ha il suo rovescio, the other side of the coin.

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