Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

plain - definition and synonyms

 
 
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
adjective plain pronunciation in British English /pleɪn/
Word Forms
Close
adjectiveplain
comparativeplainer
superlativeplainest
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    easily seen or understood

    Hugh’s message was short, but the meaning was plain enough.

    it is plain (that):

    It was plain that they knew each other already.

    it is plain to someone (that):

    It was plain to everyone that Maude was not happy.

    make it plain:

    Therese made it plain that she would not help Robert any more.

    be plain to see:

    Her disappointment was plain to see.

  2. 2
    simple in design, with no decoration

    a plain wooden table

    The gardens were fairly plain, with few plants.

    a plain white T-shirt

    We sell a selection of plain and patterned ties.

    1. b.
      not very attractive

      He seems to go for plain quiet women.

    2. c.
      [only before noun] used before a name for saying that someone does not have a special title or name

      It’s just plain Mr Cunningham now, no need to call me Doctor.

derived word

plainness

noun [uncountable]

conlang

… a language for human communication which has been invented and has not developed naturally

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

spogs

spectacles; boiled sweets, candy; soft aniseed-flavoured jelly sweets coated with blue and pink sugar sprinkles

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog