the food served and eaten especially at one of the customary, regular occasions for taking food during the day, as breakfast, lunch, or supper.
one of these regular occasions or times for eating food.
a coarse, unsifted powder ground from the edible seeds of any grain:
wheat meal; cornmeal.
any ground or powdery substance, as of nuts or seeds, resembling this.
a native English combining form, now unproductive, denoting a fixed measure at a time:
the food served and eaten
(informal) make a meal of, to perform (a task) with unnecessarily great effort
the edible part of a grain or pulse (excluding wheat) ground to a coarse powder, used chiefly as animal food
(mainly US) maize flour
“food; time for eating,” c.1200 (perhaps late Old English), mel “appointed time for eating,” also “a meal, feast,” from Old English mæl “fixed time, occasion, a meal,” from Proto-Germanic *mæla- (cf. Old Frisian mel “time;” Middle Dutch mael, Dutch maal “time, meal;” Old Norse mal “measure, time, meal;” German Mal “time,” Mahl “meal;” Gothic mel “time, hour”), from PIE *me-lo-, from root *me- “to measure” (see meter (n.2)). Original sense of “time” is preserved in piecemeal. Meals-on-wheels attested from 1961. Meal ticket first attested 1870 in literal sense of “ticket of admission to a dining hall;” figurative sense of “source of income or livelihood” is from 1899.
“edible ground grain,” Old English melu “meal, flour,” from West Germanic *melwan “grind” (cf. Old Frisian mele “meal,” Old Saxon melo, Middle Dutch mele, Dutch meel, Old High German melo, German Mehl, Old Norse mjöl “meal;” Old Saxon, Old High German, Gothic malan “to grind,” German mahlen), from PIE root *mele- “to grind” (see mallet).
meal 1 (mēl)
In addition to the idiom beginning with meal ; also see square meal
[mee-lee] /ˈmi li/ noun, South African. 1. Sometimes, mealies. corn; maize. 2. an ear of corn. /ˈmiːlɪ/ noun 1. (South African) an ear of maize See also mealies
noun, Chiefly South African. 1. . noun 1. (South African) finely ground maize
[mee-lee] /ˈmi li/ noun, South African. 1. Sometimes, mealies. corn; maize. 2. an ear of corn. /ˈmiːlɪz/ noun 1. (functioning as sing) a South African word for maize /ˈmiːlɪ/ noun 1. (South African) an ear of maize See also mealies
- Meal moth
noun 1. a small pyralid moth, Pyralis farinalis, whose larvae are an important pest of stored cereals. The Indian meal moth (Plodia interpunctella) and the Mediterranean flour moth (Ephestia kuehniella) are other pyralids with similar habits