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Meaning of LAY

Pronunciation:  ley

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  a narrative poem of popular origin
  2. [n]  a narrative song with a recurrent refrain
  3. [adj]  not of or from a profession; "a lay opinion as to the cause of the disease"
  4. [adj]  concerning those not members of the clergy; "set his collar in laic rather than clerical position"; "the lay ministry"; "the choir sings both sacred and secular music"
  5. [v]  put into a certain place or abstract location; "Put your things here"; "Set the tray down"; "Set the dogs on the scent of the missing children"; "Place emphasis on a certain point"
  6. [v]  put in a horizontal position; "lay the books on the table"; "lay the patient carefully onto the bed"
  7. [v]  lay eggs; of female animals; "This hen doesn't lay"
  8. [v]  prepare or position for action or operation; "lay a fire"; "lay the foundation for a new health care plan"
  9. [v]  impose as a duty, burden, or punishment; "lay a responsibility on someone"

LAY is a 3 letter word that starts with L.


 Synonyms: ballad, laic, nonprofessional, place, pose, position, profane, put, secular, set
 See Also: apply, appose, arrange, array, assemble, barrel, bed, blow, bottle, bring down, bucket, build on, build upon, bury, butt, cache, clap, cock, coffin, communicate, cram, debark, defer, deposit, devise, discharge, disembark, displace, docket, drop, ensconce, ensnare, entomb, entrap, erect, fix, frame, gaol, get up, glycerolise, glycerolize, ground, hive up, hoard, hold over, imbricate, immure, impose, imprison, incarcerate, inhume, instal, install, inter, intersperse, jail, jar, jug, juxtapose, knock back, ladle, lag, land, lay, lay aside, lay away, lay out, lay over, lay to rest, lean, levy, lie, load, lose, machinate, marshal, middle, minstrelsy, mislay, misplace, move, organise, organize, parallelize, park, pass, pass on, perch, piece, pigeonhole, pile, pillow, pitch, place down, place upright, plant, poem, poise, posit, post, postpone, postpose, prepare, prepose, prorogue, put across, put away, put back, put behind bars, put down, put forward, put in, put off, put on, put over, put together, put up, rack up, rail, raise, range, rear, rebury, recess, remand, remit, replace, repose, repose on, reposition, rest, rest on, rig, save, save up, seat, seed, set back, set down, set out, set up, settle, settle down, shelve, sign, siphon, sit, sit down, situate, song, sough, sow, space, spawn, squirrel away, stand, stand up, stash, stick, stratify, superimpose, superpose, table, tack, tack together, tee, tee up, throw, trench, underlay, unload, upend, verse form



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
  1. \Lay\, imp.
    of {Lie}, to recline.
  2. \Lay\, a. [F. lai, L. laicus, Gr. ? of or from the people,
    lay, from ?, ?, people. Cf. {Laic}.]
    1. Of or pertaining to the laity, as distinct from the
       clergy; as, a lay person; a lay preacher; a lay brother.
    2. Not educated or cultivated; ignorant.[Obs.]
    3. Not belonging to, or emanating from, a particular
       profession; unprofessional; as, a lay opinion regarding
       the nature of a disease.
    {Lay baptism} (Eccl.), baptism administered by a lay person.
       --F. G. Lee.
    {Lay brother} (R. C. Ch.), one received into a convent of
       monks under the three vows, but not in holy orders.
    {Lay clerk} (Eccl.), a layman who leads the responses of the
       congregation, etc., in the church service. --Hook.
    {Lay days} (Com.), time allowed in a charter party for taking
       in and discharging cargo. --McElrath.
    {Lay elder}. See 2d {Elder}, 3, note.
  3. \Lay\, n.
    The laity; the common people. [Obs.]
          The learned have no more privilege than the lay. --B.
  4. \Lay\, n.
    A meadow. See {Lea}. [Obs.] --Dryden.
  5. \Lay\, n. [OF. lei faith, law, F. loi law. See {Legal}.]
    1. Faith; creed; religious profession. [Obs.]
             Of the sect to which that he was born He kept his
             lay, to which that he was sworn.      --Chaucer.
    2. A law. [Obs.] ``Many goodly lays.'' --Spenser.
    3. An obligation; a vow. [Obs.]
             They bound themselves by a sacred lay and oath. --
  6. \Lay\, a. [OF. lai, lais, prob. of Celtic origin; cf. Ir.
    laoi, laoidh, song, poem, OIr. laoidh poem, verse; but cf.
    also AS. l[=a]c play, sport, G. leich a sort of poem (cf.
    {Lake} to sport). ?.]
    1. A song; a simple lyrical poem; a ballad. --Spenser. Sir W.
    2. A melody; any musical utterance.
             The throstle cock made eke his lay.   --Chaucer.
  7. \Lay\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Laid}; p. pr. & vb. n.
    {Laying}.] [OE. leggen, AS. lecgan, causative, fr. licgan to
    lie; akin to D. leggen, G. legen, Icel. leggja, Goth. lagjan.
    See {Lie} to be prostrate.]
    1. To cause to lie down, to be prostrate, or to lie against
       something; to put or set down; to deposit; as, to lay a
       book on the table; to lay a body in the grave; a shower
       lays the dust.
             A stone was brought, and laid upon the mouth of the
             den.                                  --Dan. vi. 17.
             Soft on the flowery herb I found me laid. --Milton.
    2. To place in position; to establish firmly; to arrange with
       regularity; to dispose in ranks or tiers; as, to lay a
       corner stone; to lay bricks in a wall; to lay the covers
       on a table.
    3. To prepare; to make ready; to contrive; to provide; as, to
       lay a snare, an ambush, or a plan.
    4. To spread on a surface; as, to lay plaster or paint.
    5. To cause to be still; to calm; to allay; to suppress; to
       exorcise, as an evil spirit.
             After a tempest when the winds are laid. --Waller.
    6. To cause to lie dead or dying.
             Brave C[ae]neus laid Ortygius on the plain, The
             victor C[ae]neus was by Turnus slain. --Dryden.
    7. To deposit, as a wager; to stake; to risk.
             I dare lay mine honor He will remain so. --Shak.
    8. To bring forth and deposit; as, to lay eggs.
    9. To apply; to put.
             She layeth her hands to the spindle.  --Prov. xxxi.
    10. To impose, as a burden, suffering, or punishment; to
        assess, as a tax; as, to lay a tax on land.
              The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
                                                   --Is. Iiii. 6.
    11. To impute; to charge; to allege.
              God layeth not folly to them.        --Job xxiv.
              Lay the fault on us.                 --Shak.
    12. To impose, as a command or a duty; as, to lay commands on
    13. To present or offer; as, to lay an indictment in a
        particular county; to lay a scheme before one.
    14. (Law) To state; to allege; as, to lay the venue.
    15. (Mil.) To point; to aim; as, to lay a gun.
    16. (Rope Making) To put the strands of (a rope, a cable,
        etc.) in their proper places and twist or unite them; as,
        to lay a cable or rope.
    17. (Print.)
        (a) To place and arrange (pages) for a form upon the
            imposing stone.
        (b) To place (new type) properly in the cases.
    {To lay asleep}, to put sleep; to make unobservant or
       careless. --Bacon.
    {To lay bare}, to make bare; to strip.
             And laid those proud roofs bare to summer's rain.
    {To lay before}, to present to; to submit for consideration;
       as, the papers are laid before Congress.
    {To lay by}.
        (a) To save.
        (b) To discard.
                  Let brave spirits . . . not be laid by.
    {To lay by the heels}, to put in the stocks. --Shak.
    {To lay down}.
        (a) To stake as a wager.
        (b) To yield; to relinquish; to surrender; as, to lay
            down one's life; to lay down one's arms.
        (c) To assert or advance, as a proposition or principle.
    {To lay forth}.
        (a) To extend at length; (reflexively) to exert one's
            self; to expatiate. [Obs.]
        (b) To lay out (as a corpse). [Obs.] --Shak.
    {To lay hands on}, to seize.
    {To lay hands on one's self}, or {To lay violent hands on
    one's self}, to injure one's self; specif., to commit
    {To lay heads together}, to consult.
    {To lay hold of}, or {To lay hold on}, to seize; to catch.
    {To lay in}, to store; to provide.
    {To lay it on}, to apply without stint. --Shak.
    {To lay on}, to apply with force; to inflict; as, to lay on
    {To lay on load}, to lay on blows; to strike violently. [Obs.
       or Archaic]
    {To lay one's self out}, to strive earnestly.
             No selfish man will be concerned to lay out himself
             for the good of his country.          --Smalridge.
    {To lay one's self open to}, to expose one's self to, as to
       an accusation.
    {To lay open}, to open; to uncover; to expose; to reveal.
    {To lay over}, to spread over; to cover.
    {To lay out}.
        (a) To expend. --Macaulay.
        (b) To display; to discover.
        (c) To plan in detail; to arrange; as, to lay out a
        (d) To prepare for burial; as, to lay out a corpse.
        (e) To exert; as, to lay out all one's strength.
    {To lay siege to}.
        (a) To besiege; to encompass with an army.
        (b) To beset pertinaciously.
    {To lay the course} (Naut.), to sail toward the port intended
       without jibing.
    {To lay the land} (Naut.), to cause it to disappear below the
       horizon, by sailing away from it.
    {To lay to}
        (a) To charge upon; to impute.
        (b) To apply with vigor.
        (c) To attack or harass. [Obs.] --Knolles.
        (d) (Naut.) To check the motion of (a vessel) and cause
            it to be stationary.
    {To lay to heart}, to feel deeply; to consider earnestly.
    {To lay under}, to subject to; as, to lay under obligation or
    {To lay unto}.
        (a) Same as {To lay to} (above).
        (b) To put before. --Hos. xi. 4.
    {To lay up}.
        (a) To store; to reposit for future use.
        (b) To confine; to disable.
        (c) To dismantle, and retire from active service, as a
    {To lay wait for}, to lie in ambush for.
    {To lay waste}, to destroy; to make desolate; as, to lay
       waste the land.
    Syn: See {Put}, v. t., and the Note under 4th {Lie}.
  8. \Lay\, v. i.
    1. To produce and deposit eggs.
    2. (Naut.) To take a position; to come or go; as, to lay
       forward; to lay aloft.
    3. To lay a wager; to bet.
    {To lay about}, or {To lay about one}, to strike vigorously
       in all directions. --J. H. Newman.
    {To lay at}, to strike or strike at. --Spenser.
    {To lay for}, to prepare to capture or assault; to lay wait
       for. [Colloq.] --Bp Hall.
    {To lay in for}, to make overtures for; to engage or secure
       the possession of. [Obs.] ``I have laid in for these.''
    {To lay on}, to strike; to beat; to attack. --Shak.
    {To lay out}, to purpose; to plan; as, he lays out to make a
  9. \Lay\, n.
    1. That which lies or is laid or is conceived of as having
       been laid or placed in its position; a row; a stratum; a
       layer; as, a lay of stone or wood. --Addison.
             A viol should have a lay of wire strings below.
    Note: The lay of a rope is right-handed or left-handed
          according to the hemp or strands are laid up. See
          {Lay}, v. t., 16. The lay of land is its topographical
          situation, esp. its slope and its surface features.
    2. A wager. ``My fortunes against any lay worth naming.''
       (a) A job, price, or profit. [Prov. Eng.] --Wright.
       (b) A share of the proceeds or profits of an enterprise;
           as, when a man ships for a whaling voyage, he agrees
           for a certain lay. [U. S.]
    4. (Textile Manuf.)
       (a) A measure of yarn; a lea. See 1st {Lea}
       (a) .
       (b) The lathe of a loom. See {Lathe}, 3.
    5. A plan; a scheme. [Slang] --Dickens.
    {Lay figure}.
       (a) A jointed model of the human body that may be put in
           any attitude; -- used for showing the disposition of
           drapery, etc.
       (b) A mere puppet; one who serves the will of others
           without independent volition.
    {Lay race}, that part of a lay on which the shuttle travels
       in weaving; -- called also {shuttle race}.
Thesaurus Terms
 Related Terms: abate, accredit, address, advance, aim, air, alba, align, allay, allege, alleviate, anesthetize, ante, ante up, anthem, appease, aria, art song, aspect, assign, assuage, attemper, attitude, attribute, aubade, azimuth, back, ball, ballad, ballade, ballata, bank the fire, barcarole, be intimate, bearing, bearings, bent, benumb, bet, bet on, blues, blues song, blunt, board, boat song, boom, Brautlied, bridal hymn, brindisi, burden with, call, calm, calypso, canso, canticle, canto, cantus, canzone, canzonet, canzonetta, carol, cast, cast loose, cast out devils, cavatina, celestial navigation, chanson, chant, chantey, charge, chasten, Christmas carol, cite, civil, clap on ratlines, clear hawse, cohabit, come together, commit adultery, conciliate, congregational, constrain, control, cool, copulate, couple, course, cover, crawl, credit, croon, croon song, current, cushion, cut loose, dab, damp, dampen, dead reckoning, deaden, deaden the pain, de-emphasize, defuse, demand, deposit, descant, diapason, diddle, diminish, direction, direction line, dirge, ditty, downplay, drag, dress, drift, drinking song, drop, dub, dulcify, dull, ease, ease matters, enjoin, epithalamium, equalize, establish, even, exact, exorcise, exposure, extenuate, fade, fasten upon, fell, fix, flatten, flush, folk song, foment, fornicate, freight with, frig, frontage, gamble, game, give relief, grade, grease, grovel, harrow, haul, haul down, have sex, have sexual relations, hazard, heading, heave, heave apeak, heave round, heave short, helmsmanship, hymeneal, hymn, impose, impose on, impose upon, impute, inclination, incline, inflict on, inflict upon, kedge, keep within bounds, Kunstlied, laic, laical, lay a wager, lay aloft, lay down, lay flat, lay ghosts, lay level, lay low, lay on, lay out, lay the dust, lenify, lessen, level, levy, lie, lie down, lie flat, lie limply, lie prone, lie prostrate, lie with, Liebeslied, lied, lighten, lilt, line, line of direction, line of march, line of position, lodge, log, loll, lounge, love song, love-lilt, lubricate, lull, make a bet, make it with, make love, make out, mate, matin, measure, meet a bet, melodia, melodic line, melody, minstrel song, minstrelsy, mitigate, moderate, modulate, mollify, mount, mow, national anthem, navigation, nonclerical, nonecclesiastical, nonministerial, nonordained, nonpastoral, nonreligious, note, numb, obtund, offer, oil, orientation, pacify, pad, palliate, park, parlay, pass, pilotage, piloting, placate, place, plane, planish, plaster, play, play against, play down, plunge, point, pose, posit, position, position line, post, poultice, pour balm into, pour balm on, pour oil on, present, propitiate, prothalamium, punt, put, put down, put on, put upon, quarter, radio bearing, range, rase, ratline down, raze, recline, reduce, reduce the temperature, refer, refrain, relieve, repose, reposit, rest, restrain, roll, roll flat, run, saddle with, salve, screw, seat, secular, secularist, secularistic, see, serena, serenade, serenata, serve, service, set, set down, settle, shave, slacken, slake, sleep with, slow down, smooth, smooth down, smooth out, smooth over, smoothen, smother, sober, sober down, soften, solo, solo part, song, soothe, soprano part, spar down, spawn, sprawl, spread, stake, stand pat, station, steamroll, steamroller, steerage, steering, stick, stifle, strain, stream the log, stupe, subdue, subject to, submit, suppress, tame, task, tax, temper, temporal, tendency, tenor, theme song, tone down, torch song, track, train, tranquilize, traverse a yard, treble, trend, tune, tune down, turn, underplay, unlash, unsacred, unspell, Volkslied, wager, war song, warble, warp, way, weaken, wedding song, weight down with, yoke with