- laborious or careful efforts; assiduous care: Great pains have been taken to repair the engine perfectly.
- the suffering of childbirth.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- paimio chair,
- pain in the neck,
- pain-pleasure principle,
- paine, albert bigelow,
- paine, robert treat
Origin of pain
Examples from the Web for pains
Lee would stay up late, unable to sleep from the pains he had in his back.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile|Robert Ward|January 3, 2015|DAILY BEAST
In the not-so-distant future, an independent country, which belongs to Kurds, will rise from these wants, pains, fire and ashes.Dear Turkish PM: It’s Time to Act to Save Kobani’s Kurds|Bahman Ghobani|October 8, 2014|DAILY BEAST
It pains me to say this, in the year 2014, we are in a death match.
As much as it pains Americans to admit this, Ronaldo saved our asses.Why It’s Still OK to Hate Sexy Bastard Cristiano Ronaldo After He Saved Team USA|Emily Shire|June 26, 2014|DAILY BEAST
At the same time, interim government and military officials alike are at pains to emphasize the seriousness of their response.On the Contraband Trail With Libya’s Gun Smugglers|Peter Schwartzstein|June 16, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He began to covet this girl mightily, even while he told himself that he was a fool for his pains.Mavericks|William MacLeod Raine
Why, you fool, he's just a little clerk that was useful, and was going to get a tip for his pains.Hurricane Island|H. B. Marriott Watson
He was moved with compassion for him, since for man He undergoes all pains.The Mediaeval Mind (Volume II of II)|Henry Osborn Taylor
He was as grateful as she was, and he took no pains to conceal the emotions which agitated him.Work and Win|Oliver Optic
Collins would have killed it for its pains, but killing had upset his nerves that day.Forty-one Thieves|Angelo Hall
Word Origin for pain
late 13c., "punishment," especially for a crime; also "condition one feels when hurt, opposite of pleasure," from Old French peine "difficulty, woe, suffering, punishment, Hell's torments" (11c.), from Latin poena "punishment, penalty, retribution, indemnification" (in Late Latin also "torment, hardship, suffering"), from Greek poine "retribution, penalty, quit-money for spilled blood," from PIE *kwei- "to pay, atone, compensate" (see penal). The earliest sense in English survives in phrase on pain of death.
Phrase to give (someone) a pain "be annoying and irritating" is from 1908; localized as pain in the neck (1924) and pain in the ass (1934), though this last might have gone long unrecorded and be the original sense and the others euphemisms. Pains "great care taken (for some purpose)" is first recorded 1520s (in the singular in this sense, it is attested from c.1300). First record of pain-killer is from 1853.
c.1300, "to exert or strain oneself, strive; endeavor," from Old French pener (v.) "to hurt, cause pain," from peine, and from Middle English peine (n.); see pain (n.). Transitive meaning "cause pain; inflict pain" is from late 14c. That of "to cause sorrow, grief, or unhappiness" also is from late 14c. Related: Pained; paining.
In addition to the idioms beginning with pain
- pain in the neck
- at pains
- feel no pain
- for one's pains
- growing pains
- no pain, no gain
- on pain of