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tale Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun a message that tells the particulars of an act or occurrence or course of events; presented in writing or drama or cinema or as a radio or television program
    story; narration; narrative.
    • his narrative was interesting
    • Disney's stories entertain adults as well as children
  2. noun a trivial lie
    fib; story; taradiddle; tarradiddle.
    • he told a fib about eating his spinach
    • how can I stop my child from telling stories?

Tale noun
  1. See Tael.
Tale noun
AS. talu number, speech, narrative; akin to D. taal speech, language, G. zahl number, OHG. zala, Icel. tal, tala, number, speech, Sw. tal, Dan. tal number, tale speech, Goth. talzjan to instruct. Cf. Tell, v. t., Toll a tax, also Talk, v. i.
  1. That which is told; an oral relation or recital; any rehearsal of what has occured; narrative; discourse; statement; history; story. "The tale of Troy divine." Milton. "In such manner rime is Dante's tale." Chaucer.
    We spend our years as a tale that is told. Ps. xc. 9.
  2. A number told or counted off; a reckoning by count; an enumeration; a count, in distinction from measure or weight; a number reckoned or stated.
    The ignorant, . . . who measure by tale, and not by weight. Hooker.
    And every shepherd tells his tale, Under the hawthornn in the dale. Milton.
    In packing, they keep a just tale of the number. Carew.
  3. (Law) A count or declaration. Obs.
    Therefore little tale hath he told Of any dream, so holy was his heart. Chaucer.
    Syn. -- Anecdote; story; fable; incident; memoir; relation; account; legend; narrative.
Tale intransitive verb
  1. To tell stories. Obs. Chaucer. Gower.

Webster 1913

"Rowling never met an adverb she didn't like."

-Stephen King on J.K Rowling's excessive use of adverbs.

Fear not the Adverb Hell!

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