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[plad] /plæd/
any fabric woven of differently colored yarns in a crossbarred pattern.
a pattern of this kind.
a long, rectangular piece of cloth, usually with such a pattern and worn across the left shoulder by Scottish Highlanders.
having the pattern of a plaid.
Origin of plaid
1505-15; < Scots Gaelic plaide blanket, plaid (def 3) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for plaid
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was the plaid belonging to Stella Hardy, who had died in her teens.

    Tiverton Tales Alice Brown
  • She had on a plaid shawl of purple, green, and red checkers, crossed on her bosom.

  • In gorgeous tweeds and a shepherd's plaid cap he looked the part.

    Kent Knowles: Quahaug Joseph C. Lincoln
  • He put it under his plaid, and prepared to give the signal whistle.

    Gilian The Dreamer Neil Munro
  • Out flashed the lantern from beneath his plaid and he held it up to the window.

    Gilian The Dreamer Neil Munro
British Dictionary definitions for plaid


/plæd; pleɪd/
a long piece of cloth of a tartan pattern, worn over the shoulder as part of Highland costume
  1. a crisscross weave or cloth
  2. (as modifier): a plaid scarf
Word Origin
C16: from Scottish Gaelic plaide, of obscure origin
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
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Word Origin and History for plaid

1510s, from Scottish, from or related to Gaelic plaide "blanket, mantle," of unknown origin, perhaps a contraction of peallaid "sheepskin," from peall "skin," from Latin pellis (but OED finds this "phonetically improbable"). The wearing of it by males forbidden by act of parliament, under penalty of transportation, 1746-82. As an adjective c.1600, from the noun.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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