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[fohl] /foʊl/
a young horse, mule, or related animal, especially one that is not yet one year of age.
verb (used with object), verb (used without object)
to give birth to (a colt or filly).
Origin of foal
before 950; (noun) Middle English fole, Old English fola; cognate with Old High German folo (German Fohlen); akin to Latin pullus young animal, Greek pôlos foal; (v.) Middle English, derivative of the noun
Related forms
unfoaled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for foal
  • In the latest episode of scientific gene-twisting, a horse births a foal cloned as her genetic twin sister.
  • Mares are capable of completing one pregnancy a year, usually resulting in one foal.
  • The glamorous brown foal jumped over the lazy cosmonaut.
  • Maternal investment results in better foal condition through increased play behaviour in horses.
  • They flipped a coin to see who would get the first foal of the mating.
  • One of the head males killed a foal, and the rest of the herd snubbed him somehow.
  • The presentations include a parade of breeds, shop talk with the farrier and the mare and foal show.
British Dictionary definitions for foal


the young of a horse or related animal
to give birth to (a foal)
Word Origin
Old English fola; related to Old Frisian fola, Old High German folo foal, Latin pullus young creature, Greek pōlos foal
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for foal

Old English fola "foal, colt," from Proto-Germanic *fulon (cf. Old Saxon folo, Middle Dutch and Dutch veulen, Old Norse foli, Old Frisian fola, Old High German folo, German Fohlen, Gothic fula), from PIE *pulo- "young of an animal" (cf. Greek polos "foal," Latin pullus "a young animal," Albanian pele "mare"), from root *pau- "few, little" (see few).


"give birth (to a foal)," late 14c., from foal (n.). Related: Foaled; foaling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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