adjective, plain·er, plain·est.
- plaid cymru,
- plain as day,
- plain bearing,
- plain chocolate,
- plain clothes,
- plain dealing
Origin of plain1
verb (used without object) British Dialect.
Origin of plain2
Examples from the Web for plain
Yet, much like the fate that fell the first season, ratings just plain weren't good.‘The Comeback’ Finale: Give Lisa Kudrow All of the Awards|Kevin Fallon|December 29, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Thanks to the Atlanta case, they can now see another in plain sight.A Gift to the Jihadis: The Unseen Airport Security Threat|Clive Irving|December 27, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Because holy hell was that bland, unfunny, uncomfortable, and just plain confusing.The Biggest Bombs of 2014: ‘Sex Tape,’ Mariah Carey’s Vocals, ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and More|Kevin Fallon|December 19, 2014|DAILY BEAST
It is already well known that there are oilrigs disguised in plain sight all over the city.
The results of that rash decision, the most dire of which has been the rise of ISIS, are now plain for us to see.‘America in Retreat’: Why Neo-Isolationism Exploded Under Obama and What We Can Do About It|James Kirchick|December 1, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Crossing the river Lykus into the plain, Mithridates offered the Romans battle.Plutarch's Lives, Volume II|Aubrey Stewart & George Long
It was a plain, comfortable place, wainscoted about, with shelves and lockers in the whimsical copy of a vessel's cabin.
In the centre of this plain was another large koppie of which the river Ukufa, or Death, washed one side.Smith and the Pharaohs, and Other Tales|Henry Rider Haggard
As usual the ride over the plain is very tedious and tiring to the limbs—a hilly country in moderation is much more comfortable.Byeways in Palestine|James Finn
She thought it was because she was so plain and awkward—and in part it was.Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1909 to 1922|Lucy Maud Montgomery
- the unmarked white ball, as distinguished from the spot balls
- the player using this ball
Word Origin for plain
Word Origin for plain
c.1300, "flat, smooth," from Old French plain "flat, smooth, even" (12c.), from Latin planus "flat, even, level" (see plane (n.1)). Sense of "evident" is from, c.1300; that of "free from obstruction" is early 14c.; meaning "simple, sincere, ordinary" is recorded from late 14c., especially of dress, "unembellished, without decoration."
In reference to the dress and speech of Quakers, it is recorded from 1824; of Amish and Mennonites, from 1894 (in the Dutch regions of Pennsylvania Plain with the capital is shorthand adjective for "Amish and Old Order Mennonite"). Of appearance, as a euphemism for "ill-favored, ugly" it dates from 1749. Of envelopes from 1913. As an adverb from early 14c. Plain English is from c.1500. Plain dealer "one who deals plainly or speaks candidly" is from 1570s, marked "Now rare" in OED 2nd edition. To be as plain as the nose on (one's) face is from 1690s.
"level country," c.1300 (in reference to Salisbury Plain), from Old French plain "open countryside," from Latin planum "level ground, plain," noun use of neuter of planus (adj.) "flat, even, level" (see plane (n.1)). Latin planum was used for "level ground" but much more common was campus.
In addition to the idioms beginning with plain
- plain as day
- plain sailing
- in plain English