Meaning of GAIN in English


I. ˈgān adjective

( -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English gayn, geyn, from Old English gēn, from Old Norse gegn — more at again

1. dialect Britain , of a route : direct and straight

the gainest way to the glen

2. dialect Britain : useful and convenient : handy

a gain tool

II. adverb

( -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English gayn, from gayn, adjective

dialect Britain : nearly , approximately

III. intransitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English gaynen, geinen, from Old Norse gegna, from gegn, adjective

: to be of advantage or help : be suitable or sufficient

IV. ˈgān noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English gayne, from Middle French gain (from Old French gaaing, from gaaignier to gain) & gaigne, from Old French gaaigne, from gaaignier

1. : an increase in or addition to what is of profit, advantage, or benefit : resources or advantage acquired or increased : profit

the moral and cultural gains of the last 1000 years

a lottery for private gain

the practice resulted in quite a gain in confidence in the driver

the difficulties encountered, the compromises reached, the gains achieved — Vera M. Dean


a. : an increase of value (as from business transactions or increase in capital)

the loss or gain in a company's assets

b. : an increase in resources or business advantages resulting from business transactions or dealings

c. : a profit in the form of a sum of money, an acquired asset, or a reduction in liability arising from business transactions but not including mere advances in value — usually used in plural

capital gains to be entered separately on the income-tax form

2. : the act of gaining something ; especially : the act of obtaining or accumulating profit or valuable possessions


a. : an increase in amount, magnitude, or degree

the gain in weight of the cattle over a period of weeks was recorded

the gain in efficiency is more than worth the heat loss — Modern Industry

sales aggregated 84,293,729 barrels, a gain of 1.3 percent over 1951 — Americana Annual

its absence would mean … more loss than gain in social relations — W.C.Brownell

b. : the ratio of increase of output current, power, or voltage over input (as in an amplifier)

V. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle French gaigner, from Old French gaaignier to till, earn, win, gain, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German weidanōn to hunt, search for food; akin to Old English wāth hunt, wandering, Old High German weida pasture, fodder, food, Old Norse veithr hunt, hunting, fishing, Latin vis power, force — more at vim

transitive verb


a. : to get or attain to possession, control, use, or benefit of (as an advantage) by industry, initiative, merit, or craft : obtain , procure , secure

gain a sum of money

gain a good reputation

gain recognition

gain admittance

gain popularity

gain a livelihood

gain insight

after climbing all the morning he had failed to gain another glimpse of the great brown ram — C.G.D.Roberts

gain the goodwill of the people — H.C.Atyeo

a great aid to us in gaining an inspection of the grounds — A.W.O'Neil


(1) : to get in competition

gain a prize in a tennis match

(2) : to come off winner or victor in

gain a battle

gain a suit at law

c. : to get or incur by a natural development, advance, or increment or by the normal exercise of one's function : come to have : receive

the invalid gained strength under the doctor's care

the writing was such that the reader actually gained the illusion of a cruise

the false story gained credence

the impression was gained that the divisional heads would hold key positions — Farmer's Weekly (South Africa)

the child is gaining a sense of rhythm and balance — Handwriting Today

d. : to obtain by reclamation

land gained from the sea

e. : to make or acquire (as a friend)

gain an acquaintance

f. : to advance to the distance of by striving against odds or an opposing force

the football team gained forty yards in the first three plays

g. : suffer

gained a black eye for his trouble

the participants gained only ignominy and unhappiness

2. : to draw to one's particular interest or party : win to one's side : persuade

gain adherents for his religious doctrines

— often used with over

had been gained over to urge this fatal course by a gift — Encyc. Americana

3. : to arrive at

the first ones to gain the top of the mountain held it against attack

gain a goal

: reach , attain

he gained his car and he was safe — Jean Stafford

4. : to cause to be obtained or given : arouse

misfortune gains the sympathy of friends

gain the audience's attention

5. : to increase in

gain momentum

gain impetus

does not mean that the actual aesthetic experience gains nothing when it is studied in the context of our total experience — Hunter Mead

6. : to establish or reestablish a usual or normal use or position of

gained his feet after a fall

gain my equilibrium

7. of a timepiece : to run fast by the amount of

gains a minute a day

intransitive verb

1. : to secure advantage or profit : acquire gain

the man supplying the capital expected to gain considerably by the enterprise


a. : increase

the child gained in weight

gain in influence

gain in reputation

the day was gaining in warmth

b. : to increase in weight

despite her diet the woman continued to gain

c. : to improve in health

the patient gained daily

d. : to become greater

the water gained so frightfully in the ship that it seemed certain she would sink — Fletcher Pratt

3. of a timepiece : to run so that it is fast : register a time ahead of the correct time

gains by an hour a day

Synonyms: see get , reach

- gain a point

- gain face

- gain ground

- gain on

- gain the wind

- gain time

VI. noun

( -s )

Etymology: origin unknown

1. : a beveled shoulder above a tenon in carpentry

2. : a notch, mortise, or groove (as in a timber or wall) for a girder or joist

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.