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This page has 3 definitions of espial in English. Espial is a noun. Also define these 7 related words and terms: act, noticing, observing, espy, discovery, scout, and spy.



From Middle English espiaille, from Old French espier (to watch).


  • IPA(key): /ɪˈspaɪ.əl/, /ɛˈspaɪ.əl/
  • (file)


espial (countable and uncountable, plural espials)

  1. An act of noticing or observing.
    Synonym: (obsolete) espy
    • 1814, Lord Byron, “Canto I”, in The Corsair, a Tale, London: [] Thomas Davison, [], for John Murray, [], OCLC 1061889661, stanza XVII, lines 597–600, page 30:
      Secure—unnoted—Conrad's prow pass'd by, / And anchor'd where his ambush meant to lie; / Screen'd from espial by the jutting cape, / That rears on high its rude fantastic shape.
    • 1842, [anonymous collaborator of Letitia Elizabeth Landon], chapter XLII, in Lady Anne Granard; or, Keeping up Appearances. [], volume II, London: Henry Colburn, [], OCLC 1000392275, page 232:
      She had, however, the comfort of knowing that her lady's wardrobe was in her power, but it did not avail her much, as the servants of the house were so shocked at the Frenchwoman's refusal to nurse her sick lady, that every eye was upon her in the way of espial and condemnation; []
  2. The fact of noticing or observing; a discovery.
  3. (obsolete) A scout; a spy.
    Synonym: (obsolete) espy
    • Scout definition
      A person sent out to gain and bring in tidings; especially, one employed in war to gain information about the enemy and ground. (1 of 11 scout definitions)
    • Spy definition
      A person who secretly watches and examines the actions of other individuals or organizations and gathers information on them (usually to gain an advantage).


See also