\ ˈhāl How to pronounce hale (audio) \

Definition of hale

 (Entry 1 of 6)

: free from defect, disease, or infirmity : sound also : retaining exceptional health and vigor a hale and hearty old man


haled; haling

Definition of hale (Entry 2 of 6)

transitive verb

1 : haul, pull
2 : to compel to go haled her into court


biographical name (1)
\ ˈhāl How to pronounce Hale (audio) \

Definition of Hale (Entry 3 of 6)

Edward Everett 1822–1909 American Unitarian clergyman and writer


biographical name (2)

Definition of Hale (Entry 4 of 6)

George Ellery 1868–1938 American astronomer


biographical name (3)

Definition of Hale (Entry 5 of 6)

Sir Matthew 1609–1676 English jurist


biographical name (4)

Definition of Hale (Entry 6 of 6)

Nathan 1755–1776 American Revolutionary hero

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Synonyms & Antonyms for hale

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for hale


healthy, sound, wholesome, robust, hale, well mean enjoying or indicative of good health. healthy implies full strength and vigor as well as freedom from signs of disease. a healthy family sound emphasizes the absence of disease, weakness, or malfunction. a sound heart wholesome implies appearance and behavior indicating soundness and balance. a face with a wholesome glow robust implies the opposite of all that is delicate or sickly. a lively, robust little boy hale applies particularly to robustness in old age. still hale at the age of eighty well implies merely freedom from disease or illness. she has never been a well person

What's the Difference Between hale,healthy, sound, and robust?


When you need a word to describe someone or something in good health, you might pick hale or a synonym such as healthy, sound, or robust. Of those terms, healthy is the most general, implying full strength and vigor or simply freedom from signs of disease. Sound generally emphasizes the complete absence of defects of mind or body. Robust implies the opposite of all that is delicate or sickly and usually suggests muscular strength as well as the ability to work or play long and hard. Hale applies especially to robustness in later life. The phrase "hale and hearty" is often used to describe an older person who retains the physical qualities of youth.

Examples of hale in a Sentence

Adjective still hale and strong at 80, often outdoing his younger golfing buddies Verb the fishermen haled the huge net onto the deck of the ship
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Super Bowl of Chili This hale and hearty chili from Kitchen Scoop columnist Alicia Ross features lots of veggies and the lean meatiness of ground turkey. oregonlive, "20 Super Bowl chili recipes: Which one is right for you?," 29 Jan. 2020 The resort grounds were a bustle of hyperactive, impossibly hale young creatures on holiday. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, "Survivor’s Guilt in the Mountains," 24 Feb. 2020 This Cupid’s saucy moment in the spotlight led off the Inca soiree, and for his hale and hearty efforts he was rewarded with raucous applause and showers of doubloons. al, "Masked Observer all-in with Incas and Butterfly Maidens," 21 Feb. 2020 Richard Reinsch, a hale Indianan who worked for the Liberty Fund, which subsidizes the reprinting of Friedrich Hayek’s works, faced off against Oren Cass, a young policy wonk from the Manhattan Institute. Thomas Meaney, Harper's magazine, "Trumpism After Trump," 20 Jan. 2020 Then, to qualify for a happy afterlife, the body needed to look as hale and hearty as possible and kept as intact as possible. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "In Montreal, Egyptian Mummies, in 3-D, Have Secrets to Share," 18 Jan. 2020 Hoping to contrast the white with a blue like hale navy above the chair rail in the dining area and on the kitchen island. The Washington Post, "Q&A: Andrea Magno of Benjamin Moore on Paint Color Trends for 2020," 9 Jan. 2020 Such signals of fitness have been compared to peacock tail feathers, which would be too much of a burden if the peacock were not hale enough to escape predators. Christopher D. Lynn, CNN, "What tattoos really do to our bodies' immune systems," 3 Oct. 2019 Perhaps more intriguing, those people were fairly healthy — most were hale and hearty enough to be pilgrims, yoga students or river-rafters. New York Times, "The Ganges Brims With Dangerous Bacteria," 23 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Even though no one is being haled into court, parents still need to behave civilly. Paul Sullivan, New York Times, "The Pandemic Has Slowed the Divorce Process. Here’s What to Expect.," 8 May 2020 Then an employer who attempts union-busting could be haled into court and face an injunction against demoting or firing union organizers, followed by a trial and possibly heavy damages. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "Dealt a body blow by the Supreme Court, unions ponder: Where do we go from here?," 28 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of hale


14th century, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hale


partly from Middle English (northern) hale, from Old English hāl; partly from Middle English hail, from Old Norse heill — more at whole


Middle English halen, from Anglo-French haler, aler — more at haul

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Time Traveler for hale

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The first known use of hale was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

7 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hale.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hale. Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for hale

How to pronounce Hale (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hale

: healthy and strong
\ ˈhāl How to pronounce hale (audio) \

Kids Definition of hale

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: strong and healthy a hale and hearty man


haled; haling

Kids Definition of hale (Entry 2 of 2)

: to force to go The judge haled them into court.

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More from Merriam-Webster on hale

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hale

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hale

Spanish Central: Translation of hale

Nglish: Translation of hale for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hale for Arabic Speakers

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