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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Wale \Wale\, n. [AS. walu a mark of stripes or blows, probably originally, a rod; akin to Icel. v["o]lr, Goth. walus a rod, staff. [root]146. Cf. Goal, Weal a wale.] [1913 Webster] 1. A streak or mark made on the skin by a rod or whip; a stripe; a wheal. See Wheal. --Holland. Syn: welt; weal; wheal. [1913 Webster] 2. A ridge or streak rising above the surface, as of cloth; hence, the texture of cloth. [1913 Webster] Thou 'rt rougher far, And of a coarser wale, fuller of pride. --Beau. & Fl. [1913 Webster] 3. (Carp.) A timber bolted to a row of piles to secure them together and in position. --Knight. [1913 Webster] 4. (Naut.) (a) pl. Certain sets or strakes of the outside planking of a vessel; as, the main wales, or the strakes of planking under the port sills of the gun deck; channel wales, or those along the spar deck, etc. (b) A wale knot, or wall knot. [1913 Webster] Wale knot. (Naut.) See Wall knot, under 1st Wall. [1913 Webster]