American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Refuse or dross remaining after ore has been processed.
- n. Architecture The portion of a tailed beam, brick, or board inside a wall.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In elect.: In telegraphy, especially through cables, the discharge current due to the capacity of the line which continues to flow for an appreciable time after the signaling impulse has been received and modifies the character of the latter.
- n. In automatic teleg., a mark, on the recording-tape of a receiving instrument, which is not caused by the signaling impulse proper but by the discharge current from the line.
- n. In prospecting for coal, the outcrop of a carbon-carrying stratum at the surface of the ground. Called also smut and blossom. The vein peters out at the surface, or tails away to nothing, but leaves a stain under weathering.
- n. In building, same as tail, 5 .
- n. In surgery, same as tail, 5 .
- n. plural The parts or a part of any incoherent or fluid material separated as refuse, or separately treated as inferior in quality or value; leavings; remainders; dregs. The tailings of grain are the lighter kernels blown away from the rest in winnowing; of flour, the inferior kind separated from the better in bolting. Tanning-liquor that has become “sour” or impure is called
tailings. In metallurgy tailings are the part rejected in washing an ore that has passed through the screens of a stamp-mill, the worthless slimes left after the valuable portion has been separated by dressing or concentration. The part rejected as tailings may, however, at a future time he worked over and made to undergo still further concentration. The sand, gravel, and cobbles which pass through the sluices in hydraulic mining were formerly generally designated as tailings; of late years, and especially in State and United States legislative documents, they have been called “mining debris” or simply “debris.”
- n. In calico-printing, a fault of impression on some part of the fabric, when the colors are blurred or altogether absent, through some defect in operation or treatment.
- n. A reckoning; tally; account.
- v. present participle of tail.
- n. The act of following someone.
- n. architecture The part of a projecting stone or brick inserted in a wall.
- n. obsolete sexual intercourse
- n. obsolete The lighter parts of grain separated from the seed by threshing and winnowing; chaff.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Arch.) The part of a projecting stone or brick inserted in a wall.
- n. (Surg.) Same as Tail, n., 8 (a).
- n. obsolete Sexual intercourse.
- n. The lighter parts of grain separated from the seed threshing and winnowing; chaff.
- n. (Mining) The refuse part of stamped ore, thrown behind the tail of the buddle or washing apparatus. It is dressed over again to secure whatever metal may exist in it. Called also
- n. (Elec.) A prolongation of current in a telegraph line, due to capacity in the line and causing signals to run together.
- n. the act of following someone secretly
“Then a 4-1/2 year old buck came in tailing a doe that was in estrous.”
“That heated water is then dumped into an ever-increasing number of so-called tailing ponds -- which are really the size of lakes -- to begin a process of settling out the clay and sand and recycling the water to be used again.”
“If you brake too soon, with the tip held too high, the forward-moving line will collide either with the rod or with itself, creating what's called a tailing loop.”
“The Army Corps has often issued permits to create so-called tailing ponds.”
“Department of Justice officials for use against members of a New York organized crime family who were wary of conventional surveillance techniques such as tailing a suspect or wiretapping him.”
“The pastime of "tailing" a bull is somewhat singular.”
“Such an impulse, following immediately upon the interruption of the circuit of the transmitting battery, acts to destroy the effect of the "tailing" or static discharge of the line, L, upon the receiving instrument, and also to neutralize the same throughout the line.”
“That first assignment of "tailing" kept him thirty-six hours without sleep, but he stuck to his trail, stuck to it with the blind pertinacity of a bloodhound, and at the end transcended mere animalism by buying a tip from a friendly bartender.”
“At another time, when "tailing" on a badger-game case, he equipped himself as a theatrical "bill-sniper," followed his man about without arousing suspicion, and made liberal use of his magnetized tack-hammer in the final mix up when he made his haul.”
“This neutralized the "tailing" effect by clearing the line between pulsations, thus allowing the telegraphic characters to be clearly and distinctly outlined upon the tape.”
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