from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A proceeding in which opposing parties in a dispute present evidence and make arguments on the application of the law before a judge or jury.
  • noun An instance of such a proceeding.
  • noun The act or process of testing, trying, or putting to the proof.
  • noun An instance of such testing, especially as part of a series of tests or experiments.
  • noun An effort or attempt.
  • noun A state of pain or anguish that tests patience, endurance, or belief.
  • noun A trying, troublesome, or annoying person or thing.
  • noun A preliminary competition or test to determine qualifications, as in a sport.
  • adjective Of, relating to, or used in a trial.
  • adjective Attempted or advanced on a provisional or experimental basis.
  • adjective Made or done in the course of a trial or test.
  • idiom (on trial) In the process of being tried, as in a court of law.
  • idiom (trial by fire) A test of one's abilities, especially the ability to perform well under pressure.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The process of obtaining accuracy in mechanical undertakings, whereby the result is attained by successive approximations. The first operation is tested and the error ascertained: then this error is corrected, and other trials made. Used in centering rough-finished work for the lathe operations, for the turning and boring of cast-pulleys, in making of face-plates, straight edges, valves, earings, and the like.
  • noun The act of trying or making a test of something; a putting to proof by examination, experiment, use, exercise, or other means.
  • noun The act of trying or making an effort; a seeking to do or effect something; a determining essay or attempt.
  • noun A test of superiority; a contest; a competition.
  • noun The state of being tried; probation by the experience or suffering of something; subjection to or endurance of affliction.
  • noun That which tries or afflicts; a trying circumstance or condition; a hardship; an affliction.
  • noun In law, the judicial investigation and determination of the issues between parties; that part of a litigation which consists in the examination by the court of the point in controversy, the hearing of the evidence, if any, and the determination of the controversy, or final submission of the cause for such determination.
  • noun Something upon or by means of which a test is made; an experimental sample or indicator; a trial-piece.
  • noun In ceramics, one of the pieces of ware which are used to try the heat of the kiln and the progress of the firing of its contents.
  • noun To bring to a test; try.
  • noun Synonyms Trial, Test, proof. Trial is the more general; test is the stronger. Test more often than trial represents that which is final and decisive: as, the guns, after a severe public test, were accepted.
  • noun Attempt, endeavor, effort, essay, exertion.
  • noun Trouble, affliction, distress, tribulation.
  • noun Touchstone, ordeal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act of trying or testing in any manner.
  • noun Any effort or exertion of strength for the purpose of ascertaining what can be done or effected.
  • noun The act of testing by experience; proof; test.
  • noun Examination by a test; experiment, as in chemistry, metallurgy, etc.
  • noun The state of being tried or tempted; exposure to suffering that tests strength, patience, faith, or the like; affliction or temptation that exercises and proves the graces or virtues of men.
  • noun That which tries or afflicts; that which harasses; that which tries the character or principles; that which tempts to evil.
  • noun (Law) The formal examination of the matter in issue in a cause before a competent tribunal; the mode of determining a question of fact in a court of law; the examination, in legal form, of the facts in issue in a cause pending before a competent tribunal, for the purpose of determining such issue.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun an opportunity to test something out; a test.
  • noun appearance at judicial court.
  • noun a difficult or annoying experience
  • adjective Pertaining to a trial or test.
  • adjective Attempted on a provisional or experimental basis.
  • verb To carry out a series of tests on (a new product, procedure etc.) before marketing or implementing it.
  • verb To try out (a new player) in a sports team.
  • adjective Characterized by having three (usually equivalent) components.
  • adjective Triple.
  • adjective grammar pertaining to a language form referring to three of something, as people; contrast singular, dual and plural.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun (sports) a preliminary competition to determine qualifications
  • noun the act of undergoing testing
  • noun an annoying or frustrating or catastrophic event
  • noun (law) the determination of a person's innocence or guilt by due process of law


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English triall, a testing, from Anglo-Norman trial, from trier, to pick out, try, from Old French trier, to pick out, separate out; see try.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Anglo-Norman trial from the verb trier, from Old French trier ("to pick out, cull"), from Gallo-Romance *triare, of unknown origin.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin trialis, an adjective formed from tres ("three") + -ālis.


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