Main
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. 2000.

Synonyms:

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  • main — Main, f. monosyl. Manus. l Espagnol et l Italien le disent de mesmes, Mano. La main dextre, Dextera, vel Dextra. La main senestre ou gauche, Laeua, Sinistra. Main chargée et pleine de quelque chose, Grauis manus. La main est toute engourdie et… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • 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… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Main — der; [e]s: rechter Nebenfluss des Rheins. * * * I Main   [dt. »Haupt «], die Hauptfunktion in einem C bzw. C++ Programm (C, C++). Jedes C bzw. C++ Programm muss genau eine solche Funktion enthalten, von der ausgehend der weitere Ablauf des Progr …   Universal-Lexikon

  • main — [mān] n. [ME < OE mægen, akin to ON magn: see MIGHT2] 1. physical strength; force; power: now only in with might and main, with all one s strength, with all one s strength 2. [< MAIN the adj.] the principal or most important part or point:… …   English World dictionary

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  • 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… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • 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

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