entail

verb
en·​tail | \ in-ˈtāl How to pronounce entail (audio) , en- \
entailed; entailing; entails

Definition of entail

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to impose, involve, or imply as a necessary accompaniment or result the project will entail considerable expense
2 : to restrict (property) by limiting the inheritance to the owner's lineal descendants or to a particular class thereof
3a : to confer, assign, or transmit (something) for an indefinitely long time : to confer, assign, or transmit as if by entail entailed on them indelible disgrace— Robert Browning
b : to fix (a person) permanently in some condition or status entail him and his heirs unto the crown— William Shakespeare

entail

noun
en·​tail | \ ˈen-ˌtāl How to pronounce entail (audio) , in-ˈtāl How to pronounce entail (audio) \

Definition of entail (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a restriction especially of lands by limiting the inheritance to the owner's lineal descendants or to a particular class thereof
b : an entailed (see entail entry 1 sense 2) estate
2 : something transmitted as if by entail

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from entail

Verb

entailer \ in-​ˈtā-​lər How to pronounce entail (audio) , en-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for entail

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of entail in a Sentence

Verb Pregnancy involves the bodily dependence of the unborn child on its mother; in many cases, it entails a significant physical burden. — Cathleen Kaveny, Commonweal, 4 May 2007 … it was a Master Highlighter Event, a two-day guest appearance by one of Kinkade's specially trained assistants, who would highlight any picture bought during the event for free. Highlighting a picture is not that different from highlighting your hair: it entails stippling tiny bright dots of paint on the picture to give it more texture and luminescence. — Susan Orlean, New Yorker, 15 Oct. 2001 Life is a difficult and complicated enterprise. It entails joy but also suffering, gain but also loss, hope but also despair. — Neal Gabler, Life: The Movie, 1998 Discourse is a social as well as an intellectual activity; it entails interaction between minds, and it revolves around something possessed in common. — David A. Hollinger, In the American Province, (1985) 1992 He accepted the responsibility, with all that it entails. a lavish wedding entails extensive planning and often staggering expense
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb As part of its new strategy, Great River would also increase its purchases in the wholesale electricity market (which could entail power generated from many sources, including fossil fuels). Mike Hughlett, Star Tribune, 30 June 2021 Cardinal Raymond Burke, a leading conservative, went so far as to suggest that the church label such politicians as apostates, which would entail the denial of sacraments. Peter Aitken, Fox News, 14 June 2021 Essentially, the fundamental function of healthcare cybersecurity, which must necessarily entail privacy protections, is to place controls on who can access what data within a system and prevent breaches and failures. Charles Aunger, Forbes, 1 June 2021 Anja Weisgerber, the lawmaker who acts as the group's frontwoman on climate issues, claimed that Merkel was responsible for the European Union's collective climate ambitions, which also entail 55% emissions reductions by 2030. David Meyer, Fortune, 29 Apr. 2021 The recommendation applies to Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines, which entail two shots, and Johnson and Johnson’s, which features a single dose. Washington Post, 31 Mar. 2021 The entire crew involved in the show has been required to follow strict COVID-19 safety measures, which entail daily testing to prevent the spread of the virus. Darlene Aderoju, PEOPLE.com, 30 Dec. 2020 Every fact might be available in a digital archive, but that doesn’t necessarily entail truth. Kyle Chayka, The New Republic, 30 June 2021 What does the Lunch with Tanner Foust fundraiser entail? Viju Mathew, Robb Report, 25 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'entail.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of entail

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for entail

Verb and Noun

Middle English entailen, entaillen, from en- entry 1 + taile, taille limitation — more at tail entry 4

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About entail

Time Traveler for entail

Time Traveler

The first known use of entail was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for entail

Last Updated

22 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Entail.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/entail. Accessed 25 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for entail

entail

verb

English Language Learners Definition of entail

: to have (something) as a part, step, or result

entail

transitive verb
en·​tail | \ in-ˈtāl How to pronounce entail (audio) \

Legal Definition of entail

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make (an estate in real property) a fee tail : limit the descent of (real property) by restricting inheritance to specific descendants who cannot convey or transfer the property estates are entailed entire on the eldest male heir— Benjamin Franklin

Other Words from entail

entailment noun

entail

noun

Legal Definition of entail (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of entailing real property also : the practice of entailing property the repeal of the laws of entail would prevent the accumulation and perpetuation of wealth in select families — Thomas Jefferson — see also De Donis Conditionalibus
2 : an entailed estate in real property if entails had not become barrable— Eileen Spring
3 : the fixed line of descent of an entailed estate

History and Etymology for entail

Transitive verb

Middle English entaillen, from en-, causative prefix + taille restriction on inheritance — see tail

More from Merriam-Webster on entail

Nglish: Translation of entail for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of entail for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about entail

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!