vale of tears

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search



Loan translation of Latin lacrimarum vallis, from the Salve Regina, where it refers to the world as a whole. The expression is based on Hebrew עמק הבכא (ʿēmeq habbāḵāʾ), mentioned in Psalm 84:7, originally probably “sear valley”, but interpreted as “valley of weeping”. Vale is a Middle English word meaning a valley or dale.


vale of tears (plural vales of tears)

  1. (idiomatic) A symbolic "valley of tears"; meaning the world and the sorrows felt through life. The phrase implies that sadness is an innate part of human experience.


See also[edit]