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


Rainy days you can see how played-out and forlorn the whole world looks.

Love is an old, played-out farce, which nobody any longer laughs at.

"The Played-Out Man" is a record of his plunge into one absorption after another.

The man who was outside here had played-out leather ones on.

Out all night on a played-out bronc, an' me too thick to guess he was up to some devilment an' shoot him for it!

After it, the dark curtain would fall on the played-out drama, never to rise again.

I am of course—though once it was different—a broken man, with a brain clouded by whisky, only fit to run a played-out mine.

Even to the eye of the most inexperienced traveler there was no doubt that Buena Vista was a "played-out" mining camp.

They ran along together for a year or more, selling a played-out mine now and then or a "promising claim," for a small sum.

It is so impossible to be young, Claude Melville said very wearily, and with his little air of played-out indifference.


Old English plegan, plegian "move rapidly, occupy or busy oneself, exercise; frolic; make sport of, mock; perform music," from West Germanic *plegan "occupy oneself about" (cf. Old Saxon plegan "vouch for, take charge of," Old Frisian plega "tend to," Middle Dutch pleyen "to rejoice, be glad," German pflegen "take care of, cultivate"), from PIE root *dlegh- "to engage oneself," forming words in Celtic, Germanic, Slavic, and possibly Latin.

Meaning "to take part in a game" is from c.1200. Opposed to work (v.) since late 14c. Related: Played; playing. To play up "emphasize" is from 1909; to play down "minimize" is from 1930; to play along "cooperate" is from 1929. To play with oneself "masturbate" is from 1896; play for keeps is from 1861, originally of marbles or other children's games with tokens. To play second fiddle in the figurative sense is from 1809 ("Gil Blas"). To play into the hands (of someone) is from 1705. To play the _______ card is attested from 1886; to play fair is from mid-15c. To play (something) safe is from 1911; to play favorites is attested from 1902. For play the field see field (n.).


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