W tell

World English Dictionary
tell1 (tɛl)
vb (when intr, usually foll by of) (often foll by of) (sometimes foll by on) , tells, telling, told
1.  (when tr, may take a clause as object) to let know or notify: he told me that he would go
2.  (tr) to order or instruct (someone to do something): I told her to send the letter airmail
3.  to give an account or narration (of something): she told me her troubles
4.  (tr) to communicate by words; utter: to tell the truth
5.  (tr) to make known; disclose: to tell fortunes
6.  to serve as an indication: her blush told of her embarrassment
7.  (tr; used with can, etc; may take a clause as object) to comprehend, discover, or discern: I can tell what is wrong
8.  (tr; used with can, etc) to distinguish or discriminate: he couldn't tell chalk from cheese
9.  (intr) to have or produce an impact, effect, or strain: every step told on his bruised feet
10.  informal to reveal secrets or gossip (about): don't tell!; she told on him
11.  (tr) to assure: I tell you, I've had enough!
12.  (tr) to count (votes)
13.  dialect (intr) to talk or chatter
14.  informal chiefly (US) to tell the truth no matter how unpleasant it is
15.  tell the time to read the time from a clock
16.  slang you're telling me I know that very well
[Old English tellan; related to Old Saxon tellian, Old High German zellen to tell, count, Old Norse telja]

tell2 (tɛl)
a large mound resulting from the accumulation of rubbish on a long-settled site, esp one with mudbrick buildings, particularly in the Middle East
[C19: from Arabic tall]

Tell (tɛl)
William, German name Wilhelm Tell. a legendary Swiss patriot, who, traditionally, lived in the early 14th century and was compelled by an Austrian governor to shoot an apple from his son's head with one shot of his crossbow. He did so without mishap

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. tellan "to reckon, calculate, consider, account," from P.Gmc. *taljanan "to mention in order" (cf. O.S. tellian, O.N. telja, O.Fris. tella "to count, tell," Du. tellen "to count, reckon," O.S. talon "to count, reckon," Dan. tale "to speak," O.H.G. zalon, Ger. zählen "to count, reckon"), from
base *talo (see tale). Meaning "to narrate, relate" is from c.1000; that of "to make known by speech or writing, announce" is from c.1122. Sense of "to reveal or disclose" is from c.1400; that of "to act as an informer, to 'peach' " is recorded from 1901. Meaning "to order (someone to do something)" is from 1599. Original sense in teller and phrase to tell time. For sense evolution, cf. Fr. conter "to count," raconter "to recount;" It. contare, Sp. contar "to count, recount, narrate;" Ger. zählen "to count," erzählen "to recount, narrate."
"I tolde hyme so, & euer he seyde nay." [Thomas Hoccleve, "The Regiment of Princes," c.1412]
Telling "having effect or force" is from 1852.

"mound, hill," 1864, from Arabic tall, related to Heb. tel "mount, hill, heap."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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