1. A nonmotorized vehicle designed to be pulled behind a motor vehicle, especially:
a. A large transport vehicle designed to be hauled by a truck or tractor.
b. A furnished vehicle drawn by a truck or automobile and used when parked as a dwelling or office.
2. A short, blank strip of film at the end of a reel.
3. A short filmed advertisement for a movie; a preview.
v. trail·ered, trail·er·ing, trail·ers
To transport by a trailer: trailered the boat to the beach.
To travel or live in a trailer.
[Sense 3, from the fact that film trailers originated in the early 1900s as teasers shown after one installment of a film serial in order to generate interest in the next installment.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.