[pleyt, plat]


a braid, especially of hair or straw.
a pleat or fold, as of cloth.

verb (used with object)

to braid, as hair or straw.
to make, as a mat, by braiding.
to pleat.

Origin of plait

1350–1400; Middle English pleyt < Middle French pleit < Latin plicitum, neuter of plicitus, past participle of plicāre to fold; see ply2
Related formsin·ter·plait, verb (used with object) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for plaited

twine, interweave, tuck, pleat, tress, crease, fold, knit, weave, flute, pigtail, pleach, plat

Examples from the Web for plaited

Historical Examples of plaited

  • Then she bruised every nettle with her bare feet and plaited the green flax.

  • On his shaven head he wore a small skull-cap of plaited grass.

  • Sometimes the hair of these heads was plaited like that of a girl.

    The Shadow World

    Hamlin Garland

  • She rose, folded her work and laid it in her plaited rush sewing-basket.


    Anna Balmer Myers

  • He was booted and spurred, and carried a short, heavy whip of plaited greenhide.

    Tom Gerrard

    Louis Becke

British Dictionary definitions for plaited



a length of hair, ribbon, etc, that has been plaited
(in Britain) a loaf of bread of several twisting or intertwining parts
a rare spelling of pleat


(tr) to intertwine (strands or strips) in a pattern

Word Origin for plait

C15 pleyt, from Old French pleit, from Latin plicāre to fold; see ply ²
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 plaited



late 14c., "to fold, gather in pleats," also "to braid or weave," from Old French pleir "to fold," variant of ploier, ployer "to fold, bend," from Latin plicare "to fold" (see ply (v.1)). Related: Plaited; plaiting.



c.1400, "a fold, a crease," from Anglo-French pleit, Old French ploit, earlier pleit, "fold, manner of folding," from Latin plicatus, past participle of plicare "to lay, fold, twist" (see ply (v.1)). Meaning "interlaced strands of hair, ribbon, etc." is from 1520s, perhaps from plait (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper