1. Of or pertaining to a servant or slave; befitting a servant or a slave; proceeding from dependence; hence, meanly submissive; slavish; mean; cringing; fawning; as, servile flattery; servile fear; servile obedience. "She must bend the servile knee." (Thomson) "Fearing dying pays death servile breath." (Shak)

2. Held in subjection; dependent; enslaved. "Even fortune rules no more, O servile land!" (Pope)

3. Not belonging to the original root; as, a servile letter. Not itself sounded, but serving to lengthen the preceeding vowel, as e in tune.

Origin: L. Servile, fr. Servus a servant or slave: cf. F. Servile. See Serve.

(01 Mar 1998)