Definition of gale in English:

gale

Line breaks: gale
Pronunciation: /geɪl
 
/

noun

  • 1A very strong wind: I slept well despite the howling gales outside it was blowing a gale [as modifier]: gale-force winds battered the North Sea coast
    More example sentences
    • Along the southern coastline, many large swells are generated well south of the continent by strong westerly gales that can blow unimpeded for thousands of kilometres.
    • The weather was, overall, a mixed batch, varying from bright (chilly perhaps) sunshine, to snow, to strong winds and gales.
    • Strong gales of wind had begun to blow through the valley.
    Synonyms
    storm, tempest, squall, hurricane, tornado, cyclone, typhoon, whirlwind, superstorm; strong wind, high wind; North American windstorm
    informal burster, buster
    literary flaw
  • 1.1 (also fresh gale) (On the Beaufort scale) a wind of force 8 (34-40 knots or 63-74 km/h).
    More example sentences
    • In November 2000 they set off for a five-day training run and found themselves crewing the boat into the teeth of a force eight south-westerly gale.
    • Mind you, as long as you can stop them blowing away, you could enjoy these chips in anything from a refreshing sea breeze to a force-9 gale.
    • It was a force nine gale, a tad below a hurricane, and Rogue Wave was in a grand and powerful waltz.
  • 1.2A storm at sea.
    More example sentences
    • They are winds that put the mind in tumult, sweeping us along like ships in a gale, and as storms disturb the harmony of nature, passions are discordant and jangling.
    • Fleeing with other demoralized shreds of the Spanish Armada, the galley had sailed up the eastern coast of England, driven on ahead of the English fleet by gales and storms.
    • After main summer leave, the ship - which was damaged by a ferry during gales last autumn in Portsmouth Harbour - will be preparing for her first major deployment, which begins late this year.

Origin

mid 16th century: perhaps related to Old Norse galinn 'mad, frantic'.

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