To be in poor health, esp. over a period of time.
The definition of ail is to feel sick or have pain.
An example of ail is for an older person to have poor health.
To feel ill or have pain.
Has been ailing for weeks.
To cause physical or mental pain or uneasiness to; trouble.
To be the cause of pain or distress to; trouble.
Origin of ail
- Middle English eilen from Old English eglian from egle troublesome
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English eyle, eile, from Old English eġle (“hideous, loathsome, hateful, horrid, troublesome, grievous, painful”), from Proto-Germanic *agluz (“cumbersome, tedious, burdensome, tiresome”), from Proto-Indo-European *agʰlo-, *agʰ- (“offensive, disgusting, repulsive, hateful”). Cognate with Gothic (aglus, “hard, difficult”).
- From Old English eġlan, eġlian (“to trouble, afflict”), cognate with Gothic (agljan, “to distress”).
- From Old English eġl.