Quail Definition

kwāl
quailed, quails
noun
quails
Any of various primarily ground-dwelling birds of the genus Coturnix, especially C. coturnix, small in size and having mottled brown plumage and a short tail.
American Heritage
Any of a number of small, short-tailed gallinaceous birds (family Phasianidae), including the bobwhite.
Webster's New World
verb
quailed, quails
To draw back in fear; lose heart or courage; cower.
Webster's New World

(intransitive) To waste away; to fade, wither. [from 15th c.]

Wiktionary

(now rare) To frighten, daunt (someone). [from 16th c.]

Wiktionary

(intransitive) To slacken, give way (of courage, faith etc.). [from 16th c.]

Wiktionary

To curdle; to coagulate, as milk does.

Wiktionary
Antonyms:
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pronoun
Wiktionary

Other Word Forms of Quail

Noun

Singular:
quail
Plural:
quails

Origin of Quail

  • From Middle English quaille, quaile, from Anglo-Norman quaille, from Old Dutch *kwakila (compare West Flemish kwakkel), blend of *kwakquack' and Proto-Germanic *hwahtilō "˜quail' (compare dialectal Dutch wachtel, German Wachtel), from a diminutive of Proto-Indo-European *kÊ·oḱt- "˜quail' (compare Latin coturnÄ«x, cocturnÄ«x, Lithuanian vaÅ¡taka, Sanskrit चातक (cātaka) "˜pied cuckoo'), metathesis of *u̯ortokÊ·- "˜quail' (compare Dutch kwartel, Greek ορτύκι (ortýki), Persian ورتیج (vartij'), Sanskrit वर्तका (vartaka)).

    From Wiktionary

  • Middle English quailen to give way probably from Middle Dutch quelen to suffer, be ill gwelə- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Middle English quaille from Old French perhaps from Vulgar Latin coacula of imitative origin

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Old French coaillier, French cailler, from Latin coagulare. See coagulate.

    From Wiktionary

  • From a Manx form of McPhail. Also an English nickname from the quail bird.

    From Wiktionary

  • Origin uncertain; perhaps related to Middle Dutch queilen.

    From Wiktionary

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