Meaning of PLAY in English


[play] n [ME, fr. OE plega; akin to OE plegan to play, MD pleyen] (bef. 12c) 1 a: swordplay b archaic: game, sport c: the conduct, course, or action of a game d: a particular act or maneuver in a game: as (1): the action during an attempt to advance the ball in football (2): the action in which a player is put out in baseball e: the action in which cards are played after bidding in a card game f: the moving of a piece in a board game (as chess) g: one's turn in a game "it's your ~"

2. a obs: sexual intercourse b: amorous flirtation: dalliance 3 a: recreational activity; esp: the spontaneous activity of children b: absence of serious or harmful intent: jest "said it in ~" c: the act or an instance of playing on words or speech sounds d: gaming, gambling

4. a (1): an act, way, or manner of proceeding: maneuver "that was a ~ to get your fingerprints --Erle Stanley Gardner" (2): deal, venture b (1): operation, activity "other motives surely come into ~ --M. R. Cohen" (2): brisk, fitful, or light movement "the gem presented a dazzling ~ of colors" (3): free or unimpeded motion (as of a part of a machine); also: the length or measure of such motion (4): scope or opportunity for action

5: emphasis or publicity esp. in the news media "wished the country received a better ~ in the American press --Hugh MacLennan"

6: a move or series of moves calculated to arouse friendly feelings--usu. used with make "made a big ~ for the girl --Will Herman"

7. a: the stage representation of an action or story b: a dramatic composition: drama syn see fun -- in play : in condition or position to be legitimately played -- out of play : not in play

[2]play vi (bef. 12c) 1 a: to engage in sport or recreation: frolic b: to have sexual relations; esp: to have promiscuous or illicit sexual relations--usu. used in the phrase play around c (1): to move aimlessly about: trifle (2): to toy or fiddle around with something "~ed with her food" (3): to deal or behave frivolously or mockingly: jest (4): to deal in a light, speculative, or sportive manner (5): to make use of double meaning or of the similarity of sound of two words for stylistic or humorous effect

2. a: to take advantage "~ing on fears" b (1): flutter, frisk (2): to move or operate in a lively, irregular, or intermittent manner c: to move or function freely within prescribed limits d: to produce a stream "hoses ~ing on a fire" 3 a (1): to perform music "~ on a violin" (2): to sound in performance "the organ is ~ing" (3): to emit sounds "the radio is ~ing" (4): to reproduce recorded sounds "a record is ~ing" b (1): to act in a dramatic production (2): show, run "what's ~ing at the theater" c: to be suitable for dramatic performance d: to act with special consideration so as to gain favor, approval, or sympathy "might ~ to popular prejudices to serve his political ends --V. L. Parrington"--often used in the phrase play up to

4. a: to engage or take part in a game b: to perform in a position in a specified manner "the outfielders were ~ing deep" c: to perform an action during one's turn in a game d: gamble e (1): to behave or conduct oneself in a specified way "~ safe" (2): to feign a specified state or quality "~ dead" (3): to take part in or assent to some activity: cooperate "~ along with his scheme" (4): to act so as to prove advantageous to another--usu. used in the phrase play into the hands of

5: to gain approval: go over "her idea did not ~ well" ~ vt 1 a (1): to engage in or occupy oneself with "~ baseball" (2): to engage in (an activity) as a game (3): to deal with, handle, or manage (4): exploit, manipulate b: to pretend to engage in the activities of "~ war" "children ~ing house" c (1): to amount to by one's efforts "~ed an important role in their success" (2): to perform or execute for amusement or to deceive or mock "~ a trick" (3): wreak "~ havoc"

2. a (1)n -- adj -- play ball : cooperate -- play both ends against the middle : to set opposing interests against each other to one's own ultimate profit -- play by ear : to deal with something without previous planning or instructions -- play games : to try to hide the truth from someone by deceptive means -- play one's cards : to act with the means available to one -- play possum : to pretend to be asleep or dead -- play second fiddle : to take a subordinate position -- play the field : to date or have romantic connections with more than one person -- play the game : to act according to a code or set of standards -- play with fire : to do something risky or dangerous -- play with oneself : masturbate

Merriam-Webster English vocab.      Английский словарь Merriam Webster.