main


main
main [mān]
n.
[ME < OE mægen, akin to ON magn: see MIGHT2]
1. physical strength; force; power: now only in with might and main, with all one's strength, with all one's strength
2. [< MAIN the adj.] the principal or most important part or point: usually in the phrase in the main, mostly, chiefly
3. a principal pipe, conduit, or line in a distribution system for water, gas, electricity, etc.
4. Old Poet. the high, or open, sea; ocean
5. Archaic the mainland: see SPANISH MAIN
6. Obs. any broad expanse
7. Naut. short for:Naut. short for
a) MAINMAST
b) MAINSAIL
adj.
[ME mayn < OE mægen- (in comp.) & ON meginn, strong]
1. Obs. strong; powerful
2. chief in size, extent, importance, etc.; principal; leading; specif., designating a large central unit on which subsidiaries or branches depend [the main post office]
3. of, near, or connected with the mainmast or mainsail
4. [Brit. Dial.] remarkable; considerable
5. Obs. designating a broad expanse of land, sea, or space
SYN.- CHIEF
——————
by main force or by main strength
by sheer force (or strength)

English World dictionary. . 2014.

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  • Main — (m[=a]n), a. [From {Main} strength, possibly influenced by OF. maine, magne, great, L. magnus. Cf. {Magnate}.] 1. Very or extremely strong. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] That current with main fury ran. Daniel. [1913 Webster] 2. Vast; huge. [Obs.] The… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Main — Main, n. [AS. m[ae]gen strength, power, force; akin to OHG. magan, Icel. megin, and to E. may, v. [root]103. See {May}, v.] 1. Strength; force; might; violent effort. [Obs., except in certain phrases.] [1913 Webster] There were in this battle of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Main — der; [e]s: rechter Nebenfluss des Rheins. * * * I Main   [dt. »Haupt «], die Hauptfunktion in einem C bzw. C++ Programm (C, C++). Jedes C bzw. C++ Programm muss genau eine solche Funktion enthalten, von der ausgehend der weitere Ablauf des Progr …   Universal-Lexikon

  • main — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ chief in size or importance. ► NOUN 1) a principal water or gas pipe or electricity cable. 2) (the mains) Brit. public water, gas, or electricity supply through pipes or cables. 3) (the main) archaic or literary the open ocean …   English terms dictionary

  • main — (m[=a]n), n. [F. main hand, L. manus. See {Manual}.] 1. A hand or match at dice. Prior. Thackeray. [1913 Webster] 2. A stake played for at dice. [Obs.] Shak. [1913 Webster] 3. The largest throw in a match at dice; a throw at dice within given… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English