follow Dictionary.com

Is Tuesday named for a one-handed god?

impale

[im-peyl] /ɪmˈpeɪl/
verb (used with object), impaled, impaling.
1.
to fasten, stick, or fix upon a sharpened stake or the like.
2.
to pierce with a sharpened stake thrust up through the body, as for torture or punishment.
3.
to fix upon, or pierce through with, anything pointed.
4.
to make helpless as if pierced through.
5.
Archaic. to enclose with or as if with pales or stakes; fence in; hem in.
6.
Heraldry.
  1. to marshal (two coats of arms, as the family arms of a husband and wife) on an escutcheon party per pale.
  2. (of a coat of arms) to be combined with (another coat of arms) in this way.
Also, empale (for defs 1–5).
Origin
1545-1555
1545-55; < Medieval Latin impālāre, equivalent to Latin im- im-1 + pāl(us) pale2 + -ā- thematic vowel + -re infinitive ending
Related forms
impaler, noun
impalement, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for impale
  • He expected them to come in on a high tide and impale their craft on his barriers.
  • Above him a lady is seen plunging from a trap door in the ceiling, about to impale herself upon him.
  • The creature's arms elongate into gleaming spikes that impale people and latch onto moving cars.
  • impale insulation over anchors and attach speed washers.
  • They prey on vertebrate and invertebrate animals which they often impale on thorns or barbed wire.
  • To immobilize prey, the shrike will often impale it on cactus spines.
  • It is a projection that has the potential to either impale or entangle.
British Dictionary definitions for impale

impale

/ɪmˈpeɪl/
verb (transitive)
1.
often foll by on, upon, or with. to pierce with a sharp instrument: they impaled his severed head on a spear
2.
(archaic) to enclose with pales or fencing; fence in
3.
(heraldry) to charge (a shield) with two coats of arms placed side by side
Derived Forms
impalement, empalement, noun
impaler, empaler, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin impālāre, from Latin im- (in) + pāluspale²
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for impale
v.

1520s, "to enclose with stakes, fence in," from Middle French empaler and directly from Medieval Latin impalare "to push onto a stake," from assimilated form of in- "into, in" (see in- (2)) + Latin palus "a stake, prop, stay; wooden post, pole," from PIE *pak-slo-, from root *pag-/*pak- "to fasten" (see pact). Sense of "pierce with a pointed stake" (as torture or punishment) first recorded 1610s. Related: Impaled; impaling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for impale

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for impale

10
13
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for impale