Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “trail”

See all translations

trail

noun uk   /treɪl/ us  

trail noun (PATH)

B2 [C] a path through the countryside, often made or used for a particular purpose: a forest/mountain trail
More examples

trail noun (SIGNS)

C2 [C] the smell or series of marks left by a person, animal, or thing as it moves along: The dogs are specially trained to follow the trail left by the fox. He left a trail of muddy footprints behind him. [S] various pieces of information that together show where someone you are searching for has gone: The police admit that the thieves have left no trail for them to follow up.be on the trail of sb/sth to be searching for someone or something by examining information you find about where they went: The three men went to the Bahamas, on the trail of a sunken 17th-century galleon full of treasure.

trail

verb uk   /treɪl/ us  

trail verb (MOVE SLOWLY)

[I or T, usually + adv/prep] to (allow something to) move slowly along the ground or through the air or water, after someone or something: Katherine, your skirt's trailing in the mud! As the boat moved along, he trailed his hand in the water.C2 [I usually + adv/prep] to move slowly and without energy or enthusiasm: The delegates trailed back into the conference room for the afternoon session. After a mile or two the youngest children were trailing behind.
More examples

trail verb (IN A COMPETITION/GAME)

be trailing C2 to be losing to your competitor in a competition: The Swiss team are trailing by six points. The Nationalist Party is trailing (behind) the Liberals in the opinion polls.

trail verb (FOLLOW)

[T] to follow the trail of someone or something
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of trail from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of trail?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “trail” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

ellipsis

a situation in which words are left out of a sentence but the sentence can still be understood

Word of the Day

Euphemisms (Words used to Avoid Offending People)

by Kate Woodford,
March 04, 2015
​​​ We recently looked at the language that we use to describe lies and lying. One area of lying that we considered was ‘being slightly dishonest, or not speaking the complete truth’. One reason for not speaking the complete truth is to avoid saying something that might upset or offend people. Words and

Read More 

snapchat verb

March 02, 2015
to send someone a message using the photomessaging application Snapchat We used to have a thing until he got a girlfriend. now

Read More