verb (used with object), mis·laid, mis·lay·ing.

to lose temporarily; misplace: He mislaid his keys.
to lay or place wrongly; arrange or situate improperly: to mislay linoleum.

Origin of mislay

First recorded in 1350–1400, mislay is from the Middle English word mysse layen. See mis-1, lay1
Related formsmis·lay·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for mislay

displace, misplace

Examples from the Web for mislay

Historical Examples of mislay

  • But in case you do mislay it, write to the Publishers for a complete catalog.

    The Rover Boys on a Hunt

    Arthur M. Winfield (Edward Stratemeyer)

  • They have been known to mislay letters, and then to be ready to swear that they had been mailed.

  • If you can make him mislay his compass he will never come back to you.'

    The Fifth Queen

    Ford Madox Ford

  • What a provoking thing it is to mislay a letter; but I suppose it is an oversight you have never committed.

    Luttrell Of Arran

    Charles James Lever

  • Just mislay the wig and keep out of Georgie's way till the curtain goes up.

British Dictionary definitions for mislay


verb -lays, -laying or -laid (tr)

to lose (something) temporarily, esp by forgetting where it is
to lay (something) badly
Derived Formsmislayer, noun
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

Word Origin and History for mislay

c.1400, from mis- (1) + lay (v.). Related: Mislaid; mislaying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper