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the vale of years
The last or declining years of one's age or career. Astride his motorcycle with thick chestnut hair and a deep, booming voice, my grandfather looks very little like a man who has slipped into the vale of years.
vale of tears
Life or the world at large regarded as a source of sorrow, strife, or tragedy. I'm only glad that she is at peace and can leave this vale of tears behind. If you convince yourself that life is nothing but a vale of tears, you will end up creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.
(this) vale of tears
Fig. the earth; mortal life on earth. (A vale is a literary word for valley.) When it comes time for me to leave this vale of tears, I hope I can leave some worthwhile memories behind. Uncle Fred left this vale of tears early this morning.
vale of tearsthe world regarded as a scene of trouble or sorrow. literary
This phrase dates from the mid 16th century; earlier variants included vale of trouble , vale of weeping , and vale of woe .
1997 Shetland Times Then by God's grace we'll meet again, Beyond this vale of tears.
the vale of yearsthe declining years of a person's life; old age.
This expression comes from Shakespeare 's Othello: ‘for I am declin'd into the vale of yeares’.