While writing, I wanted to use a word that would be the action of someone intimidated, even frightened, made anxious by something. The word that came to mind was “quail.” To be sure of my usage, I googled it……. and could not find any such meaning. But I persisted.
After looking through many on-line dictionaries and trying multiple synonyms and finding nothing, I finally brought up the image of someone quaking and cowering and under cower I found at Dictionary.com a synonym, quail and clicked on it.
“to lose heart or courage in difficulty or danger; shrink with fear.” Exactly. But why did so many other entries fail to note this synonym?