Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

ail - definition and synonyms

Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
verb [transitive] ail pronunciation in American English /eɪl/
Word Forms
Close
present tense
I/you/we/theyail
he/she/itails
present participleailing
past tenseailed
past participleailed
  1. 1
    old-fashioned to make someone sick or unhappy
    What ails you?
  2. 2
    formal to have a bad or harmful effect on someone or something
    She offers an interesting analysis of what ails contemporary American society.

Open Dictionary

troll factory

a company that pays pays its employees to write online comments in favour or against somebody or something posing as ordinary Internet users

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog