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[pleyn-tiv] /ˈpleɪn tɪv/

expressing sorrow or melancholy; mournful:
a plaintive melody.
expressing melancholy; mournful

late 14c., “lamenting,” from Old French plaintif “complaining; wretched, miserable,” from plainte (see plaint). Sense of “mournful, sad” first recorded 1570s. Related: Plaintively; plaintiveness.


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  • Plain-vanilla

    [pleyn-vuh-nil-uh] /ˈpleɪn vəˈnɪl ə/ adjective, Informal. 1. having no embellishments, extra equipment, elaborate packaging, etc.; plain; simple; down-to-earth: I want a plain-vanilla car without a lot of chrome trim.

  • Plainview

    [pleyn-vyoo] /ˈpleɪnˌvyu/ noun 1. a town on W Long Island, in SE New York. 2. a city in N Texas.

  • Plainville

    [pleyn-vil] /ˈpleɪn vɪl/ noun 1. a town in N Connecticut.

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