- an action or speech carried on to the side while the main action proceeds, especially on the stage.
Origin of by-play
First recorded in 1805–15
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for byplay
They rode too hard, they were too much in earnest, to take the time for byplay.'Me-Smith'
Miss Leonora sat rather grimly looking on at all this byplay.The Perpetual Curate
Mrs [Margaret] Oliphant
He found time also, when the press of the season was over, for some byplay as a reviewer.Musical Criticisms
Some byplay among the gypsies supplies the humor of the situations.The Standard Light Operas
Husband and wife "took turns" from the single cup; there was gayety and byplay.The Higher Court
Mary Stewart Daggett
- secondary action or talking carried on apart while the main action proceeds, esp in a play
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012