[ spley ]
See synonyms for: splaysplayedsplayersplayest on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object)
  1. to spread out, expand, or extend.

  2. to form with an oblique angle; make slanting; bevel.

  1. to make with a splay or splays.

  2. to disjoin; dislocate.

verb (used without object)
  1. to have an oblique or slanting direction.

  2. to spread or flare.

  1. Architecture. a surface that makes an oblique angle with another, as where the opening through a wall for a window or door widens from the window or door proper toward the face of the wall.

  1. spread out; wide and flat; turned outward.

  2. clumsy or awkward.

  1. oblique or awry.

Origin of splay

1300–50; Middle English; aphetic form of display

Other words from splay

  • un·splayed, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use splay in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for splay


/ (spleɪ) /

  1. spread out; broad and flat

  2. turned outwards in an awkward manner

  1. to spread out; turn out or expand

  2. (tr) vet science to dislocate (a joint)

  1. a surface of a wall that forms an oblique angle to the main flat surfaces, esp at a doorway or window opening

  2. enlargement

Origin of splay

C14: short for display

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