(noun, adjective, verb)


1. Pertaining to a trial or test.

2. Attempted on a provisional or experimental basis.

3. Characterized by having three (usually equivalent) components.

4. Triple.

5. (grammar) pertaining to a language form referring to three of something, as people; contrast singular, dual and plural.

- No language has a trial number unless it has a dual.


1. the act of testing something

- in the experimental trials the amount of carbon was measured separately

- he called each flip of the coin a new trial

Similar word(s): run, test

Definition categories: act, attempt, effort, endeavor, endeavour, try

2. trying something to find out about it

- a sample for ten days free trial

- a trial of progesterone failed to relieve the pain

Similar word(s): test, tryout

Definition categories: thought, experiment, experimentation

3. the act of undergoing testing

- candidates must compete in a trial of skill

Similar word(s): test

Definition categories: act, attempt, effort, endeavor, endeavour, try

4. (law) the determination of a person's innocence or guilt by due process of law

- he had a fair trial and the jury found him guilty

- most of these complaints are settled before they go to trial

Definition categories: act, proceeding, proceedings

5. (sports) a preliminary competition to determine qualifications

- the trials for the semifinals began yesterday

Definition categories: event, competition, contest

6. an annoying or frustrating or catastrophic event

- his mother-in-law's visits were a great trial for him

Similar word(s): tribulation, visitation

Definition categories: event, affliction

Sentences with trial as a noun:

- They will perform the trials for the new equipment next week.

- That boy was a trial to his parents.

- soccer trials


1. To carry out a series of tests on (a new product, procedure etc.) before marketing or implementing it.

- The warning system was extensively trialed before being fitted to all our vehicles.

2. To try out (a new player) in a sports team.

- The team trialled a new young goalkeeper in Saturday's match, with mixed results.