Definitions for quailkweɪl

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word quail

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

quailkweɪl(n.)(pl.)quails; quail.

  1. any of various small, plump New World gallinaceous birds of the subfamily Odontophorinae, of the pheasant family, as the bobwhite.

    Category: Ornithology

  2. any of various similar Old World gallinaceous birds of the genus Coturnix, esp. C. coturnix, of Eurasia.

    Category: Ornithology

Origin of quail:

1300–50; ME quaille < OF < Gmc


  1. to lose courage in difficulty or danger; shrink with fear.

* Syn: See wince.

Origin of quail:

1400–50; < MD quelen, queilen

Princeton's WordNet

  1. quail(noun)

    flesh of quail; suitable for roasting or broiling if young; otherwise must be braised

  2. quail(verb)

    small gallinaceous game birds

  3. flinch, squinch, funk, cringe, shrink, wince, recoil, quail(verb)

    draw back, as with fear or pain

    "she flinched when they showed the slaughtering of the calf"

Webster Dictionary

  1. Quail(verb)

    to die; to perish; hence, to wither; to fade

  2. Quail(verb)

    to become quelled; to become cast down; to sink under trial or apprehension of danger; to lose the spirit and power of resistance; to lose heart; to give way; to shrink; to cower

  3. Quail(verb)

    to cause to fail in spirit or power; to quell; to crush; to subdue

  4. Quail(verb)

    to curdle; to coagulate, as milk

  5. Quail(noun)

    any gallinaceous bird belonging to Coturnix and several allied genera of the Old World, especially the common European quail (C. communis), the rain quail (C. Coromandelica) of India, the stubble quail (C. pectoralis), and the Australian swamp quail (Synoicus australis)

  6. Quail(noun)

    any one of several American partridges belonging to Colinus, Callipepla, and allied genera, especially the bobwhite (called Virginia quail, and Maryland quail), and the California quail (Calipepla Californica)

  7. Quail(noun)

    any one of numerous species of Turnix and allied genera, native of the Old World, as the Australian painted quail (Turnix varius). See Turnix

  8. Quail(noun)

    a prostitute; -- so called because the quail was thought to be a very amorous bird


  1. Quail

    Quail is a collective name for several genera of mid-sized birds generally considered in the order Galliformes. Old World quail are found in the family Phasianidae, and New World quail are found in the family Odontophoridae. The buttonquail are named more for their superficial resemblance to quail, and are members of the Turnicidae family in the Charadriiformes order. The King Quail, one of the Old World quail, is often sold in the pet trade; and within this trade is commonly, though mistakenly, referred to as a "button quail". Many of the common larger species are farm-raised for table food or egg consumption, and are hunted on game farms or in the wild, where they may be released to supplement the wild population, or extend into areas outside their natural range. The collective noun for a group of quail is a flock, covey or bevy.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Quail

    Common name for two distinct groups of BIRDS in the order GALLIFORMES: the New World or American quails of the family Odontophoridae and the Old World quails in the genus COTURNIX, family Phasianidae.

The Foolish Dictionary, by Gideon Wurdz

  1. QUAIL

    v. t., To shrink--a characteristic of the bird when ordered in a restaurant.

Translations for quail

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


to draw back in fear; to shudder

The little boy quailed at the teacher's angry voice.

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