gale / gāl/ • n. a very strong wind: it was almost blowing a gale| [as adj.] gale-force winds. ∎ Meteorol. a wind of force 7 to 10 on the Beaufort scale (28-55 knots or 32-63 mph). ∎ a storm at sea. ∎ (a gale of/gales of) fig. a burst of sound, esp. of laughter: she collapsed into gales of laughter.
a wind of considerable strength, 1527; a state of current or passing emotions; the perfume or aroma of similar intangible things.
Examples: gale of animal spirits, 1663; of doubts and apprehensions, 1800; of fancy, 1675; of fragrance, 1820; of laughter; of merriment, 1894; of opportunity, 1669; of perfume, 1711; of praise, 1827; of wind, 1547.