In action or operation. For example, A number of conflicting forces were in play, so the outcome was uncertain. It is also put as bring into play, meaning “to put into action,” as in The surprise witness brought new evidence into play. [Mid-1600s]
In sports, in a position to be legally or feasibly played, as in The ball is now in play. [Late 1700s]
In business, in a position for a possible corporate takeover, as in After a news item said the company was in play, the price of its stock began to rise. [Colloquial; second half of 1900s]
Words nearby in play
How to use in play in a sentence
Have there been discussions with FX regarding an Archer movie, and how do you think that would play out?‘Archer’ Creator Adam Reed Spills Season 6 Secrets, From Surreal Plotlines to Life Post-ISIS|Marlow Stern|January 8, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Father Joel Román Salazar died in a car crash in 2013; his death was ruled an accident, but the suspicion of foul play persists.
He plays an aging punk rocker and I play the drummer from his old band.Coffee Talk with Fred Armisen: On ‘Portlandia,’ Meeting Obama, and Taylor Swift’s Greatness|Marlow Stern|January 7, 2015|DAILY BEAST
When fathers hold and play with their children, oxytocin and prolactin kick in, priming them for bonding.
This is a guy who has his son-in-law clean his eyeglasses, for crying out loud.
I assure you, no matter how beautifully we play any piece, the minute Liszt plays it, you would scarcely recognize it!
But I hope at least to play to him a few times, and what is more important, to hear him play repeatedly.
To fill up the time till Liszt came, our hostess made us play, one after the other, beginning with the latest arrival.
Again the sallow fingers began to play with the book-covers, passing from one to another, but always slowly and gently.Bella Donna|Robert Hichens
Her attachment to impressionism leads this artist to many experiments in color—or, as one critic wrote, "to play with color."Women in the fine arts, from the Seventh Century B.C. to the Twentieth Century A.D.|Clara Erskine Clement