Meaning of gale in English:


Pronunciation /ɡeɪl/

See synonyms for gale

Translate gale into Spanish


  • 1A very strong wind.

    ‘I slept well despite the howling gales outside’
    • ‘it was blowing a gale’
    • ‘ gale-force winds battered the North Sea coast’
    • ‘Along the southern coastline, many large swells are generated well south of the continent by strong westerly gales that can blow unimpeded for thousands of kilometres.’
    • ‘The weather was, overall, a mixed batch, varying from bright (chilly perhaps) sunshine, to snow, to strong winds and gales.’
    • ‘Strong gales of wind had begun to blow through the valley.’
    • ‘On the worst day, Wednesday 12 November, northwesterly gales caused exceptional dust-storms to sweep across three states.’
    • ‘Alone on high, the garden takes the full brunt of the northwester and northeaster gales.’
    • ‘You are enjoying a pleasant spell of weather, 14 to 17 degrees say, and suddenly the weather changes and we have two days of gales with biting winds.’
    • ‘A little rain fell in the Perth-Bunbury area, but none fell inland, where hot dry gales and thick duststorms were experienced.’
    • ‘There is no definite periodicity generally associated with wind gusts or gales.’
    • ‘This generated frequent heavy rains and fierce westerly gales: in some coastal areas there was significant wind damage as well as flooding.’
    • ‘One of the unusual things about this particular storm was that it was a southerly gale and not the usual westerly gales that tend to affect the south of Britain.’
    • ‘When there is a strong wind outside, a gale blows indoors.’
    • ‘He remembered how he used to crawl into the older man's bed when he was very young, when things like thunderstorms and strong gales still frightened him.’
    • ‘Winds became gales and a thunderstorm suddenly appeared out of nowhere pouring sheets of raindrops.’
    • ‘Freezing easterly gales, with wind speeds up to sixty miles per hour registered at Harry's weather station, continue to dominate the beginning of spring.’
    • ‘Weather conditions were not kind to lake anglers this week with heavy downpours of rain accompanied by varying winds and gales at times.’
    • ‘Strong gales coming from a certain point could blow the roof away some night, he said.’
    • ‘When I returned to the car and unloaded my bags, I found a single car key on a ring lying by the back right tire. I was tired, R. had been cranky, and the wind was blowing a gale.’
    • ‘The wind was getting stronger, blowing up a real gale.’
    • ‘An unusual feature of the month was the frequency of strong winds, with gale gusts recorded at most stations.’
    • ‘Winter approached with strong gales and several inches of snow, which covered the vast plains and farmland.’
    1. 1.1also fresh galeMeteorology (on the Beaufort scale) a wind of force 8 (34–40 knots or 63–74 km/h).
      ‘In November 2000 they set off for a five-day training run and found themselves crewing the boat into the teeth of a force eight south-westerly gale.’
      • ‘Mind you, as long as you can stop them blowing away, you could enjoy these chips in anything from a refreshing sea breeze to a force-9 gale.’
      • ‘It was a force nine gale, a tad below a hurricane, and Rogue Wave was in a grand and powerful waltz.’
      • ‘More significantly, I ceased to notice the rain, the sleet and the force-10 gale.’
      • ‘It's been a roisterous time, filled with every strength and variety of wind from a ragamuffin breeze right through to a force eight gale, whipping in from the sea and over the moors.’
    2. 1.2A storm at sea.
      ‘They are winds that put the mind in tumult, sweeping us along like ships in a gale, and as storms disturb the harmony of nature, passions are discordant and jangling.’
      • ‘Fleeing with other demoralized shreds of the Spanish Armada, the galley had sailed up the eastern coast of England, driven on ahead of the English fleet by gales and storms.’
      • ‘After main summer leave, the ship - which was damaged by a ferry during gales last autumn in Portsmouth Harbour - will be preparing for her first major deployment, which begins late this year.’
      • ‘The weather is unpredictable, with violent gales and storms having resulted in countless shipping casualties over the years, continuing right up to the present.’
      • ‘Six were washed ashore in a gale and pieces are still visible on very low spring tides.’
      • ‘Type 23 frigate HMS St Albans, damaged by a ferry in gales in the autumn, is back at sea today, well on course to resume her programme of trials and training.’
      • ‘The service ended in 1903 when the Bowmore was torn from her moorings at Rosses Point during a gale, driven ashore on Oyster Island and wrecked.’
      • ‘The Aran Islands lifeboat had broken loose from its mooring in a gale at the beginning of November.’
      • ‘At the height of the gale, the harbourmaster radioed a coastguard on the spot and asked him to estimate the wind speed.’
      • ‘Fierce gales damaged many yachts in the Fastnet race and forced 100 to retire.’
      • ‘The weather in the Firth of Forth that day was night was described by Forth Coastguards as horrendous with gales, rough seas and freezing temperatures.’
      • ‘Trying to measure insulin in a small yacht in a gale shows just how diabetes brings its excitements and inconveniences.’
      • ‘NorthLink blamed the exceptionally low tides and easterly gales, which left an insufficient depth of water at Aberdeen for vessels.’
      • ‘It is true, though, that a few times each winter the harbor is hit by a southeasterly gale, its impact intensified by the fact that the harbor's open mouth faces in that direction.’
      • ‘However, the shore angler in Ireland will always find sheltered waters available when others are affected by tides or gales.’
      • ‘One night in May, soon after the Adventure arrived back at Ngamotu, an anchor rope broke during a terrible gale and the ship washed up on the beach.’
      • ‘At last he came near enough to where he was directly above it, and fighting against a hurricane-like gale to land.’
      • ‘A dangerously weak link was accidentally discovered on the moorings of one yacht just the day before the gales struck.’
      • ‘The unscheduled delay was sparked when the ship ran into fierce gales which gave rise to seasickness among and several of the crew members.’
      • ‘She rocked from side to side, like a ship in a gale.’
      storm, tempest, squall, hurricane, tornado, cyclone, typhoon, whirlwind, superstorm
      View synonyms
  • 2a gale of/gales ofAn outburst of laughter.

    ‘she collapsed into gales of laughter’
    • ‘Youth shouts with a laugh, and again, the band collapses in gales of laughter.’
    • ‘I blink in surprise and Sam and Ben burst into gales of laughter.’
    • ‘By the time Fox was done speaking, the giggles had erupted into gales of laughter.’
    • ‘By way of proof that some human values are indeed universal, the crowd react to the sight of the hapless official retreating to a neutral corner for treatment between rounds with gales of delighted laughter.’
    • ‘He did more than that: He whipped up gales of laughter with his recollection of how as a student (and a former journalist who knew his rights) he sued the old Yorkshire Evening Press for libel.’
    • ‘The anger of the home punters at this, gave way to double delight at the end of the following period, gales of laughter greeting the news of a 6-2 defeat for hated rivals Hibs at Rugby Park.’
    • ‘They broke into slightly tipsy gales of laughter.’
    • ‘On Thursday, December 18th Kilmovee Community Centre was full of Christmas spirit and gales of laughter as the two one act plays were staged.’
    • ‘Hours after Jack the Knife had carved them up, most of the Disappeared were gathered in the parliament cafeteria, stunned and emitting occasional gales of manic laughter.’
    • ‘To ask the question is to answer it - with gales of laughter.’
    • ‘He could be ferociously stern, and sometimes susceptible to melancholy, but stories about him are almost always attended by laughter, often gales of it.’
    • ‘A trial run at the pressure-sensitive, spinning scrub-brush sent my partner into gales of laughter and hysteria.’
    • ‘We were dying in gales of laughter on hearing this one.’
    • ‘The gales of laughter from the others wash over me.’
    • ‘But their awestruck silence was soon replaced by gales of laughter when their teacher read the letter out loud.’
    • ‘I kept backtracking in the conversation, thinking I had offended her, only to be met with gales of laughter.’
    • ‘It induces, or used to induce until recently, gales of laughter.’
    • ‘Those words and the hearty gales of laughter that followed will linger in my memory forever.’
    • ‘Murray is laid back, good company and his chat is peppered with gales of laughter that is, as often as not, directed at his own jokes.’
    • ‘Well, apparently after this was said, the place was rolling in gales of laughter for quite a few minutes.’
    outburst, burst, eruption, explosion, effusion, attack, fit, paroxysm
    View synonyms


Mid 16th century perhaps related to Old Norse galinn ‘mad, frantic’.