Ply Ply, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Plied}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Plying}.] [OE. plien, F. plier to fold, to bend, fr. L. plicare; akin to Gr. ?, G. flechten. Cf. {Apply}, {Complex}, {Display}, {Duplicity}, {Employ}, {Exploit}, {Implicate}, {Plait}, {Pliant}, {Flax}.] 1. To bend. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

As men may warm wax with handes plie. --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

2. To lay on closely, or in folds; to work upon steadily, or with repeated acts; to press upon; to urge importunately; as, to ply one with questions, with solicitations, or with drink. [1913 Webster]

And plies him with redoubled strokes --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

He plies the duke at morning and at night. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

3. To employ diligently; to use steadily. [1913 Webster]

Go ply thy needle; meddle not. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

4. To practice or perform with diligence; to work at. [1913 Webster]

Their bloody task, unwearied, still they ply. --Waller. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • ply — [plaɪ] verb plied PTandPP JOURNALISM 1. [transitive] to sell something: • 60 retailers were plying their products on the radio. 2. ply your trade to work at your job or business: • two outdoor …   Financial and business terms

  • Ply — Ply, n. [Cf. F. pli, fr. plier. See {Ply}, v.] 1. A fold; a plait; a turn or twist, as of a cord. Arbuthnot. [1913 Webster] 2. Bent; turn; direction; bias. [1913 Webster] The late learners can not so well take the ply. Bacon. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ply — Ⅰ. ply [1] ► NOUN (pl. plies) 1) a thickness or layer of a folded or laminated material. 2) each of a number of multiple layers or strands of which something is made. ORIGIN French pli fold , from Latin plicare to fold . Ⅱ. pl …   English terms dictionary

  • Ply — Ply, v. i. 1. To bend; to yield. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] It would rather burst atwo than plye. Chaucer. [1913 Webster] The willow plied, and gave way to the gust. L Estrange. [1913 Webster] 2. To act, go, or work diligently and steadily; especially …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ply — ply1 [plī] vt. plied, plying [ME plien < OFr plier < L plicare, to fold < IE base * plek , to entwine > FLAX] Now Rare to bend, twist, fold, or mold vi. Obs. to bend or submit n. pl. plies [MFr pli < the v.] 1 …   English World dictionary

  • ply — I verb busy oneself with, carry on, devote oneself to, do work with, employ, engage in, exercere, exercise, exploit, handle, make use of, manipulate, occupy oneself with, operate, persevere at, practice, pursue, put in practice, put into effect,… …   Law dictionary

  • ply — vb *handle, manipulate, wield, swing Analogous words: exercise, *practice, drill: operate, work, function (see ACT vb): manage, direct, control, *conduct …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • ply — [v] use, work at carry on, dispense, employ, exercise, exert, follow, function, handle, maneuver, manipulate, practice, pursue, put out, swing, throw, utilize, wield; concepts 100,225 Ant. be lazy, idle …   New thesaurus

  • ply — am·ply; ap·ply; crum·ply; dim·ply; du·ply; im·ply; mul·ti·ply·ing; pan·o·ply; pim·ply; ply·er; ply·gain; ply·mo·the·an; ply·mo·thi·an; ply; pop·ply; pur·ply; quad·ru·ply; quin·tu·ply; rip·ply; rum·ply; sim·ply; stip·ply; tip·ply; tri·ply;… …   English syllables

  • ply — ply1 [plaı] v past tense and past participle plied present participle plying third person singular plies [Date: 1300 1400; Origin: apply] 1.) ply your trade literary to work at your business, especially buying and selling things on the street ▪… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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