Hail MaryHail Mary
nounpl. Hail Mar′ys
- the first words of the English version of a prayer to the Virgin Mary used in the Roman Catholic Church
- this prayer
- Football a long pass thrown into the end zone, as in the final seconds of a game, in the desperate hope that one of the receivers will be able to catch it for a touchdown
Origin of Hail Marysee Ave Maria
nounpl. Hail Marys
- Roman Catholic Church A prayer based on the greetings of Gabriel and Saint Elizabeth to the Virgin Mary. Also called Ave Maria .
- Football A long pass thrown in desperation, especially near the end of a game.
(plural Hail Marys)
- (Roman Catholicism) A prayer calling for the intercession of the Holy Mother, for Catholics an essential element of the rosary, and with use in certain other denominations.
- (American football) A long forward pass with little chance of completion, typically used when time is running out and no other play is practical.
- (by extension) An act done in desperation, with only a very small chance of success.