Origin of shale; from Middle English literally , shell ; from Old English scealu, shell
Origin of shaleProbably from Middle English, shell, from Old English scealu; see skel-1 in Indo-European roots.
- A shell or husk; a cod or pod.
- (geology) A fine-grained sedimentary rock of a thin, laminated, and often friable, structure.
(third-person singular simple present shales, present participle shaling, simple past and past participle shaled)
- To take off the shell or coat of.
Middle English schale 'shell, husk; scale', from Old English scealu 'shell, husk, pod', from Proto-Germanic *skalō (compare West Frisian skaal 'dish', Dutch schaal 'shell', German Schale 'husk, pod'), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kelo- 'split, cleaved' (compare Lithuanian skalà 'splinter', Old Church Slavonic skala 'rock, stone', Albanian halë 'fish bone, splinter', Sanskrit kalá 'small part'), from *(s)kel- 'to split, cleave' (compare Hittite iškalla 'to tear apart, slit open', Lithuanian skélti 'to split', Ancient Greek skállein 'to hoe, harrow').