Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

WORD ORIGIN

Old English mægen (n.) "power, bodily strength, force, efficacy," from Proto-Germanic *maginam "power," suffixed form of PIE root *magh- (1) "be able, have power" (see may (v.)). Original sense preserved in phrase with might and main. Meaning "principal channel in a utility system" is first recorded 1727 in main drain; Used since 1540s for "continuous stretch of land or water." In Spanish Main the word is short for mainland and refers to the coast between Panama and Orinoco.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR IN THE MAIN

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.