veil

noun
\ ˈvāl How to pronounce veil (audio) \

Definition of veil

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a length of cloth worn by women as a covering for the head and shoulders and often especially in Eastern countries for the face specifically : the outer covering of a nun's headdress
b : a length of veiling or netting worn over the head or face or attached for protection or ornament to a hat or headdress a bridal veil
c : any of various liturgical cloths especially : a cloth used to cover the chalice
2 : the life of a nun often used in the phrase take the veil
3 : a concealing curtain or cover of cloth
4 : something that resembles a veil a veil of stars especially : something that hides or obscures like a veil lift the veil of secrecy
5 : a covering body part or membrane: such as
a : velum
b : caul

veil

verb
veiled; veiling; veils

Definition of veil (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cover, provide, obscure, or conceal with or as if with a veil

intransitive verb

: to put on or wear a veil

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Examples of veil in a Sentence

Noun Veils of moss draped the trees. under the veil of descending darkness the thieves began their operation Verb Her eyes were partially veiled by her long, dark hair. The sun was veiled by clouds.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun San Antonio awakened this morning to several inches of snow and bitter cold as a major winter storm lowered its icy veil over South Central Texas and shattered record low temperatures not seen in the Alamo City in more than 30 years. Elizabeth Zavala, San Antonio Express-News, "San Antonio awakens to powdery snow, record low temperatures and sunny skies," 15 Feb. 2021 But there’s a sort of veil in his gaze now and a relaxed softness in his facial features. Carolyn Wells, Longreads, "Alzheimer’s Before Forty," 22 Dec. 2020 J-Lo is getting ready for her own wedding, in a tasteful-yet-adorable off-the-shoulder dress, veil, and pillbox hat, when Matt races to City Hall to bust up the proceedings. Emma Specter, Vogue, "27 Thoughts I Had While Rewatching The Wedding Planner," 7 Dec. 2020 On both sides of the veil, people try to keep the portal propped open. Janet Manley, Wired, "The Ethics of Rebooting the Dead," 26 Nov. 2020 Only a handful of people marveled at the main draw: the magnificent waterfalls, shrouded in a veil of mist, that straddle the U.S.-Canada border. Washington Post, "Six portraits from a year defined by loss," 30 Dec. 2020 The Virgin Mary, in blue veil, faints from the agony of her loss. History Magazine, "The Renaissance 'Prince of Painters' made a big impact in his short life," 22 Dec. 2020 Can Bordeaux’s wine industry lift its veil and become more accessible? Esther Mobley, SFChronicle.com, "With the big Williams Selyem deal, a California wine icon aims to avoids a common fate: a soulless private equity future," 14 Jan. 2021 Keep in mind that the price tag on your gown doesn't include alteration fees, accessories, your veil, shipping, sales tax, or any post-wedding dry cleaning and preservation. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "When & How to Shop for a Wedding Dress—This Year and Next," 14 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb García seems to be running out of ways to veil the truth. Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review, "In Argentina, a Telling Comparison between Abortion and Genocide," 7 Dec. 2020 Others lurch out of the dark shadows of cars and trucks, reaching for their faces to veil their noses and mouths. Joe Heim, Washington Post, "Pandemic teaching, in their words," 6 Oct. 2020 But their optimistic outlook could hardly veil the pervading sense of destabilization setting in as the country struggles to emerge from a generation-defining crisis, just as its politics seem to be deteriorating to new lows, Kevin Liptak writes. Angela Dewan, CNN, "What you need to know about coronavirus on Friday, October 2," 2 Oct. 2020 As the story goes, the Nintendo PlayStation prototype was grouped together with some miscellaneous items that [were] boxed up with a group lot, the contents of which were veiled. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "The world’s only known Nintendo PlayStation has sold for $300,000 [Updated]," 6 Mar. 2020 One anecdote that has remained fixed firmly in family lore: while on a school field trip in Riyadh, my sister, twelve years old at the time, had a large rock thrown at her by one of these enforcers because she was not veiled. Keija Parssinen, The New York Review of Books, "The US–Saudi Story, Through the Eyes of an Aramco ‘Brat’," 31 Jan. 2020 In the previous novel, Anne’s attendants, veiled so as not to be tainted by association with her death, used their bodies to block the men approaching the corpse. Judith Shulevitz, The Atlantic, "Hilary Mantel Takes Thomas Cromwell Down," 5 Apr. 2020 The Scottish town of Helensburgh, northwest of Glasgow on the banks of the Clyde, is veiled in clouds and drizzle for much of the year. Sarah Medford, WSJ, "An Iconic House in Scotland Gets a Gorgeous Redesign," 30 Apr. 2019 Instead, the defense offered a not-so-veiled-threat. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Welcome to the Trump defense team’s impeachment trial nightmare," 1 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'veil.' 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 veil

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for veil

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Latin vēla, plural of vēlum "sail, awning, curtain," going back to *u̯eg-s-lo-, perhaps derivative of a verbal base *u̯eg-, akin to Old Irish -fig- "weaves," Old English wēoce "wick" — more at wick entry 1

Verb

Middle English veilen, borrowed from Anglo-French veler, verbal derivative of veil veil entry 1

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Time Traveler for veil

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for veil

Last Updated

27 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Veil.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/veil. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for veil

veil

noun

English Language Learners Definition of veil

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of cloth or net worn usually by women over the head and shoulders and sometimes over the face
: something that covers or hides something else

veil

verb

English Language Learners Definition of veil (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cover (something) with a veil or with something that is like a veil : to hide or partly hide (something)

veil

noun
\ ˈvāl How to pronounce veil (audio) \

Kids Definition of veil

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a piece of cloth or net worn usually by women over the head and shoulders and sometimes over the face
2 : something that covers or hides like a veil a veil of secrecy Her hazel eyes, under their veil of long lashes, had a greenish flash to them.— Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain

veil

verb
veiled; veiling

Kids Definition of veil (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cover with or as if with a piece of cloth or net for the head and shoulders or face

veil

noun
\ ˈvā(ə)l How to pronounce veil (audio) \

Medical Definition of veil

: a covering body part or membrane especially : caul sense 2

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Comments on veil

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