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From Middle English, from Old English ealu, ealo, from Proto-Germanic *alu (compare Dutch aal, Swedish öl), from Proto-Indo-European *h?elut- (“beer”), or *h?elu- (“bitter”). Compare Russian ?? (ol), Lithuanian alùs, Armenian ??? (??i); compare also Latin alum (“comfrey”), al?ta (“tawed leather”), Ancient Greek ????????? (alúdoimos, “bitter”).
ale (countable and uncountable, plural ales)
- (dated) A beer made without hops.
- A beer produced by so-called warm fermentation and not pressurized.
- A festival in English country places, so called from the liquor drunk.