- to act (a part) sketchily.
- to act subtly and restrainedly.
- to understate or de-emphasize; downplay: The ambassador underplayed his role in the peace negotiations.
- to leave out of one's acting all subtlety and enriching detail.
- to achieve an effect in acting with a minimum of emphasis.
Origin of underplay
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Related Wordslessen, reduce, decrease, underestimate, diminish, downplay, curtail, mute, minimize, soft-pedal, soften, belittle, underplay, deemphasize, derogate, dwarf, deprecate, prune, knock, attenuate
Examples from the Web for underplay
What she did need to worry about was trying to underplay her book in view of the attention it drew.Thank You, Elizabeth Wurtzel: ‘Prozac Nation’ Turns 20
July 31, 2014
To say that this is an unusual moment would be to underplay how unique it really is.Charlie Wilson's CIA Adventures
February 11, 2010
Especially with a purple speech like that; you've simply got to learn to underplay.My Fair Planet
Evelyn E. Smith
- to play (a role) with restraint or subtlety
- to achieve (an effect) by deliberate lack of emphasis
- (intr) cards to lead or follow suit with a lower card when holding a higher one
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