What does plaintive mean?

Definitions for plaintive
ˈpleɪn tɪvplain·tive

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word plaintive.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. mournful, plaintiveadjective

    expressing sorrow


  1. plaintiveadjective

    Sorrowful, mournful or melancholic.

  2. Etymology: From plaintif, from plainte; see plaint.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Plaintiveadjective

    Complaining; lamenting; expressive of sorrow.

    Etymology: plaintif, Fr.

    His careful mother heard the plaintive sound,
    Encompass’d with her sea-green sisters round. Dryden.

    The goddess heard,
    Rose like a morning mist, and thus begun
    To sooth the sorrows of her plaintive son. Dryden.

    Can nature’s voice
    Plaintive be drown’d, or lessen’d in the noise,
    Though shouts as thunder loud afflict the air. Matthew Prior.

    Leviathans in plaintive thunders cry. Edward Young.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Plaintivenoun

    repining; complaining; lamenting

  2. Plaintivenoun

    expressive of sorrow or melancholy; mournful; sad

  3. Etymology: [F. plaintif. See Plaintiff, n.]

How to pronounce plaintive?

How to say plaintive in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of plaintive in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of plaintive in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for plaintive

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for plaintive »


Find a translation for the plaintive definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these plaintive definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "plaintive." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 6 Oct. 2022. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/plaintive>.

    Are we missing a good definition for plaintive? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from others
    • A. equivalent
    • B. appellative
    • C. eminent
    • D. occlusive

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for plaintive: