Definitions for: Plain


[n] a basic knitting stitch
[n] extensive tract of level open land; "they emerged from the woods onto a vast open plain"; "he longed for the fields of his youth"
[adv] unmistakably; "the answer is obviously wrong"; "she was in bed and evidently in great pain"; "he was manifestly too important to leave off the guest list"; "it is all patently nonsense"; "she has apparently been living here for some time"; "I thought he owned the property, but apparently not"; "You are plainly wrong"; (`plain' is often used informally for `plainly' as in"he is plain stubborn")
[adj] lacking embellishment or ornamentation; "a plain hair style"; "unembellished white walls"; "functional architecture featuring stark unornamented concrete"
[adj] lacking in physical beauty or proportion; "a homely child"; "several of the buildings were downright homely"; "a plain girl with a freckled face"
[adj] free from any effort to soften to disguise; "the plain and unvarnished truth"; "the unvarnished candor of old people and children"
[adj] comprehensible to the general public; "written for the popular press in plain nontechnical language"
[adj] clearly apparent or obvious to the mind or senses; "the effects of the drought are apparent to anyone who sees the parched fields"; "evident hostility"; "manifest disapproval"; "patent advantages"; "made his meaning plain"; "it is plain that he is no reactionary"; "in plain view"
[adj] lacking patterns especially in color
[adj] not elaborate or elaborated; simple; "plain food"; "stuck to the plain facts"; "a plain blue suit"; "a plain rectangular brick building"
[adj] not mixed with extraneous elements; "plain water"; "sheer wine"; "not an unmixed blessing"
[adj] lacking stylistic embellishment; "a literal description"; "wrote good but plain prose"; "a plain unadorned account of the coronation"; "a forthright unembellished style"
[v] express complaints, discontent, displeasure, or unhappiness; "My mother complains all day"; "She has a lot to kick about"



Webster (1913) Definition: Plain, v. i. [OE. playne, pleyne, fr. F. plaindre. See
Plaint.]
To lament; to bewail; to complain. [Archaic & Poetic]
--Milton.

We with piteous heart unto you pleyne. --Chaucer.


Plain, v. t.
To lament; to mourn over; as, to plain a loss. [Archaic &
Poetic] --Sir J. Harrington.


Plain, a. [Compar. Plainer; superl. Plainest.] [F.,
level, flat, fr. L. planus, perhaps akin to E. floor. Cf.
Llano, Piano, Plan, Plane level, a level surface.]
1. Without elevations or depressions; flat; level; smooth;
even. See Plane.

The crooked shall be made straight, and the rough
places plain. --Isa. xl. 4.

2. Open; clear; unencumbered; equal; fair.

Our troops beat an army in plain fight. --Felton.

3. Not intricate or difficult; evident; manifest; obvious;
clear; unmistakable. ``'T is a plain case.'' --Shak.

4.
(a) Void of extraneous beauty or ornament; without
conspicious embellishment; not rich; simple.
(b) Not highly cultivated; unsophisticated; free from show
or pretension; simple; natural; homely; common.
``Plain yet pious Christians.'' --Hammond. ``The plain
people.'' --A. Lincoln.
(c) Free from affectation or disguise; candid; sincere;
artless; honest; frank. ``An honest mind, and plain.''
--Shak.
(d) Not luxurious; not highly seasoned; simple; as, plain
food.
(e) Without beauty; not handsome; homely; as, a plain
woman.
(f) Not variegated, dyed, or figured; as, plain muslin.
(g) Not much varied by modulations; as, a plain tune.

Plain battle, open battle; pitched battle. [Obs.]
--Chaucer.

Plain chant (Mus.) Same as Plain song, below.

Plain chart (Naut.), a chart laid down on Mercator's
projection.

Plain dealer.
(a) One who practices plain dealing.
(b) A simpleton. [Obs.] --Shak.

Plain dealing. See under Dealing.

Plain molding (Join.), molding of which the surfaces are
plain figures.

Plain sewing, sewing of seams by simple and common
stitches, in distinct from fancy work, embroidery, etc.;
-- distinguished also from designing and fitting garments.


Plain song.
(a) The Gregorian chant, or canto fermo; the prescribed
melody of the Roman Catholic service, sung in unison,
in tones of equal length, and rarely extending beyond
the compass of an octave.
(b) A simple melody.

Plain speaking, plainness or bluntness of speech.

Syn: Level; flat; smooth; open; artless; unaffected;
undisguised; frank; sincere; honest; candid; ingenuous;
unembellished; downright; blunt; clear; simple;
distinct; manifest; obvious; apparent. See Manifest.


Plain, adv.
In a plain manner; plainly. ``To speak short and pleyn.''
--Chaucer. ``To tell you plain.'' --Shak.


Plain, n. [Cf. OF. plaigne, F. plaine. See Plain, a.]
1. Level land; usually, an open field or a broad stretch of
land with an even surface, or a surface little varied by
inequalities; as, the plain of Jordan; the American
plains, or prairies.

Descending fro the mountain into playn. --Chaucer.

Him the Ammonite Worshiped in Rabba and her watery
plain. --Milton.

2. A field of battle. [Obs.] --Arbuthnot.

Lead forth my soldiers to the plain. --Shak.


Plain, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Plained; p. pr. & vb. n.
Plaining.] [Cf. Plane, v.]
1. To plane or level; to make plain or even on the surface.
[R.]

We would rake Europe rather, plain the East.
--Wither.

2. To make plain or manifest; to explain.

What's dumb in show, I'll plain in speech. --Shak.

Synonyms: apparent, apparently, austere, bare(a), champaign, chaste, complain, direct, dry, evident, evidently, featureless, field, general, homely, inelaborate, kick, knit, knit stitch, kvetch, literal, manifest, manifestly, mere(a), obvious, obviously, patent, patently, plain stitch, plainly, popular, pure, pure and simple, quetch, self-colored, self-coloured, severe, sheer, simple(a), solid, sound off, stark, tailored, trim, unadorned, unattractive, undecorated, unelaborate, unembellished, unmingled, unmixed, unornamented, unpatterned, unvarnished

Antonyms: cheer, cheer up, chirk up, fancy, patterned

See Also: backbite, beef, bellyache, bemoan, bewail, bitch, bleat, croak, deplore, dry land, earth, flat, gnarl, gripe, grizzle, grouch, ground, grouse, grumble, hen-peck, holler, inveigh, knitting stitch, lament, land, llano, moor, moorland, murmur, mutter, nag, Olympia, peck, protest, rail, regret, repine, report, scold, simple, snowfield, solid ground, squawk, steppe, terra firma, tundra, unpretentious, unrhetorical, whine, yammer, yawp

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