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Definition of MAIN

5 definitions found:



main \main\ (m[=a]n), n. [F. main hand, L. manus. See {Manual}.]
     1. A hand or match at dice. --Prior. --Thackeray. [1913 Webster]

     2. A stake played for at dice. [Obs.] --Shak.
        [1913 Webster]

     3. The largest throw in a match at dice; a throw at dice within given limits, as in the game of hazard. [1913 Webster]

     4. A match at cockfighting. "My lord would ride twenty miles
        . . . to see a main fought." --Thackeray. [1913 Webster]

     5. A main-hamper. [Obs.] --Ainsworth.
        [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

Main \Main\, n. [AS. m[ae]gen strength, power, force; akin to OHG. magan, Icel. megin, and to E. may, v. [root]103. See {May}, v.]
     1. Strength; force; might; violent effort. [Obs., except in certain phrases.] [1913 Webster]

              There were in this battle of most might and main.
                                                    --R. of Gl. [1913 Webster]

              He 'gan advance,
              With huge force, and with importable main.
                                                    --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

     2. The chief or principal part; the main or most important thing. [Obs., except in special uses.] [1913 Webster]

              Resolved to rest upon the title of Lancaster as the main, and to use the other two . . . but as supporters.                           --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

     3. Specifically:
        (a) The great sea, as distinguished from an arm, bay, etc.; the high sea; the ocean. "Struggling in the main." --Dryden. (b) The continent, as distinguished from an island; the mainland. "Invaded the main of Spain." --Bacon. (c) principal duct or pipe, as distinguished from lesser ones; esp. (Engin.), a principal pipe leading to or from a reservoir; as, a fire main. [1913 Webster]

     {Forcing main}, the delivery pipe of a pump.

     {For the main}, or {In the main}, for the most part; in the greatest part.

     {With might and main}, or {With all one's might and main}, with all one's strength; with violent effort. [1913 Webster]

              With might and main they chased the murderous fox.
                                                    --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

Main \Main\ (m[=a]n), a. [From {Main} strength, possibly influenced by OF. maine, magne, great, L. magnus. Cf. {Magnate}.]
     1. Very or extremely strong. [Obs.]
        [1913 Webster]

              That current with main fury ran.      --Daniel. [1913 Webster]

     2. Vast; huge. [Obs.] "The main abyss." --Milton. [1913 Webster]

     3. Unqualified; absolute; entire; sheer. [Obs.] "It's a man untruth." --Sir W. Scott. [1913 Webster]

     4. Principal; chief; first in size, rank, importance, etc.; as, the main reason to go; the main proponent. [1913 Webster +PJC]

              Our main interest is to be happy as we can.
                                                    --Tillotson. [1913 Webster]

     5. Important; necessary. [Obs.]
        [1913 Webster]

              That which thou aright
              Believest so main to our success, I bring. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

     {By main force}, by mere force or sheer force; by violent effort; as, to subdue insurrection by main force. [1913 Webster]

              That Maine which by main force Warwick did win.
                                                    --Shak. [1913 Webster]

     {By main strength}, by sheer strength; as, to lift a heavy weight by main strength.

     {Main beam} (Steam Engine), working beam.

     {Main boom} (Naut.), the boom which extends the foot of the mainsail in a fore and aft vessel.

     {Main brace}.
        (a) (Mech.) The brace which resists the chief strain. Cf. {Counter brace}. (b) (Naut.) The brace attached to the main yard.

     {Main center} (Steam Engine), a shaft upon which a working beam or side lever swings.

     {Main chance}. See under {Chance}.

     {Main couple} (Arch.), the principal truss in a roof.

     {Main deck} (Naut.), the deck next below the spar deck; the principal deck.

     {Main keel} (Naut.), the principal or true keel of a vessel, as distinguished from the false keel. [1913 Webster]

     Syn: Principal; chief; leading; cardinal; capital. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

Main \Main\, adv. [See {Main}, a.]
     Very; extremely; as, main heavy. "I'm main dry." --Foote. [Obs. or Low] [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]

158 Moby Thesaurus words for "main":
     Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Eurasia, Eurasian landmass, Europe, North America, South America, absolute, all-absorbing, arch, awful, banner, basic, big, big drink, biggest, blue, blue water, brine, briny, brute, capital, cardinal, central, champion, channel, chief, cock, comprehensive, conduit, consequential, considerable, continent, controlling, crazy, critical, crowning, crucial, damned, deep, dominant, dreadful, drink, duct, effort, electric cable, energy, essential, exceedingly, exhaustive, extremely, fire main, first, focal, foremost, front, full, fundamental, gas main, grand, grave, great, greatest, head, headmost, heavy, hegemonic, high sea, high seas, highest, hydrosphere, in the main, intense, irresistible, landmass, largest, larruping, leading, line, magisterial, maiden, main sea, mainland, mainly, mains, major, master, maximum, mere, might, mighty, monstrous, necessary, ocean, ocean depths, ocean main, ocean sea, out-and-out, outstanding, overriding, overruling, paramount, particular, peninsula, pipe, pipeline, plain, plenary, power, power supply, powerful, predominant, predominating, preeminent, premier, preponderant, prevailing, primal, primary, prime, principal, pure, ranking, ruling, salt sea, salt water, sea, serious, sheer, sovereign, star, stellar, strength, strong, strongest, subcontinent, supereminent, supreme, thalassa, the bounding main, the brine, the briny, the briny deep, the deep, the deep sea, the seven seas, the vasty deep, tide, topflight, topmost, total, uppermost, utter, vigor, vital, water main


Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 [moby-thesaurus]


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