Gale refers to a very strong wind derived from gaile meaning “wind” of uncertain origin though perhaps related to Old Norse gol (breeze) or Old Danish gal meaning “bad, furious” in reference to the wind, derived from Old Norse gala meaning “to shout, charm away” or from Old English galan meaning “to sing, enchant, call” which ultimately derives form Proto-Indo-European gʰel- (to call, chant, shout). Gale is also a surname derived from Old English gal meaning “jovial, merry”, originally a nickname for a cheerful person. Another possible source is it comes from Norman French gaoile meaning “jail”, an occupational name for a jailer or perhaps someone who lived near a jail.
It’s also a nickname for Abigale or a variant spelling of Gail, both of which come from Hebrew meaning “my father is joy”.
Origin: Proto-Indo-European, Old English, Norman French, Hebrew