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Definition of “trail” - English Dictionary

"trail" in American English

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trailnoun [C]

 us   /treɪl/
  • trail noun [C] (PATH)

a ​path through the ​countryside, often made or used for a ​particularpurpose: a ​bike/​mountain/​nature trail fig. Presidential ​candidates were on the ​campaign trail in Mississippi ​yesterday.
A trail is also a ​series of ​marksleft by a ​person, ​animal, or thing as it moves along: The ​kidsleft a trail of ​muddyfootprintsacross the ​kitchenfloor.

trailverb [I/T]

 us   /treɪl/
  • trail verb [I/T] (FOLLOW)

to ​follow or come behind: [T] Ray trailed Kate up to the ​porch. [I always + adv/prep] A ​string of ​policecarsled the president’s ​limousine and ​others trailed behind.
In a ​competition, to trail is to be ​losing to someone: [I] Dallas trailed 34-21 with less than seven ​minutes to ​play in the ​footballgame. [T] Bush trailed the ​governor by only 4 ​percentagepoints. [I] Though trailing in the ​polls, she ​predictedvictory.
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of trail from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)







"trail" in British English

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trailnoun

uk   /treɪl/  us   /treɪl/
  • trail noun (PATH)

B2 [C] a ​path through a ​countryside, ​mountain, or ​forestarea, often made or used for a ​particularpurpose: a ​forest/​mountain trail a ​walking/snowshoeing/​cross-countryskiing trail

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  • trail noun (SIGNS)

C2 [C] the ​smell or ​series of ​marksleft by a ​person, ​animal, or thing as it ​moves along: The ​dogs are ​trained to follow the trail ​left by the ​fox. He left a trail ofmuddyfootprints behind him.
[S] variouspieces of ​information that together show where someone you are ​searching for has gone: The ​policeadmit that the ​robbers have left no trail for them to ​follow up.
be on the trail of sb/sth
to be ​searching for someone or something by ​examininginformation you ​find about where they went: The three men went to the Bahamas, on the trail of a ​sunken 17th-century ​galleonfull of ​treasure.

trailverb

uk   /treɪl/  us   /treɪl/
  • trail verb (MOVE SLOWLY)

[I or T, usually + adv/prep] to (​allow something to) ​moveslowly along the ​ground or through the ​air or ​water, after someone or something: Katherine, ​your skirt's trailing in the ​mud! As the ​boatmoved along, he trailed his ​hand in the ​water.
C2 [I usually + adv/prep] to ​moveslowly and without ​energy or ​enthusiasm: The ​delegates trailed back into the ​conferenceroom for the ​afternoonsession. After a ​mile or two the ​youngestchildren were trailing behind.

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Phrasal verbs
(Definition of trail from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"trail" in Business English

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trailverb

uk   us   /treɪl/
[I or T] to be less ​successful than ​competitors or than expected: This company's ​shares have ​left most ​rivals trailing. Precious-metal ​stocks trailed, at 124.35.trail behind sth Prices of mortgage-backed securities trailed behind the ​gains of the Treasury. Internetaccess in the U.S. trails Japan when it comes to ​speed.
[T] to ​advertise something before it is ​available to ​buy, see, use, etc: The ​heavily trailed announcements on ​ISAchanges were widely welcomed. The ​homesecretary trailed his new ​law in an ​article in a ​newspaper yesterday.
[I or T] to ​happen after or ​follow something: trail behind sth The ​service, ​free at the ​point of use, perpetually trails behind ​demand. History suggests that ​consumerspendingdeclines usually trail ​consumerconfidencedeclines by about 3 months.
Phrasal verbs

trailnoun [C, usually singular]

uk   us   /treɪl/
a ​series of ​activities that someone does in ​order to ​achieve something: acquisition/campaign/comeback trail The bank's ​acquisition trail across the globe might ​slow a little although it continues to ​look at ​potentialopportunities.
be on/go on/hit the trail
to be ​trying to ​find, get, or ​achieve something: He tells ​candidates to ​raisemoney early, before they ​hit the trail for speeches and ​handshakes.
blaze a/the trail
to be the first to do something new: Netscape and Hotmail were both ​swallowed up after blazing the trail for larger, less ​agilecompetitors. I'm not blazing a trail for women, I'm doing this for myself.
(hot) on the trail (of sth)
very ​close to ​finding or ​achieving something: NPR's reporter is hot on the trail of the story.
leave a trail of sth
to ​leave a ​series or ​number of things behind you: His ​company went into ​liquidationleaving a trail of ​debts. Over the past 12 months, the ​company has underperformed the ​index by over 20%, ​leaving a trail of disappointed ​investors.
(Definition of trail from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“trail” in Business English

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