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[pleyt, plat] /pleɪt, plæt/
a braid, especially of hair or straw.
a pleat or fold, as of cloth.
verb (used with object)
to braid, as hair or straw.
to make, as a mat, by braiding.
to pleat.
Origin of plait
1350-1400; Middle English pleyt < Middle French pleit < Latin plicitum, neuter of plicitus, past participle of plicāre to fold; see ply2
Related forms
interplait, verb (used with object) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for plaited
  • The shirt is usually white, intricately embroidered and plaited and made of cotton or linen.
  • Hats were plaited of straw or the fibers of palmetto leaves, and the skins of rabbits or raccoons made good headgear for winter.
  • The roofs were plaited coconut fronds as were the walls.
  • Sandals were usually made of plaited or woven yucca fibers and came in a variety of styles.
  • In summer suits the plaited skirt continues popular.
  • Devices and methods having a boardlike form having means in the form of rods or projections on which the material is plaited.
  • plaited or braided hair shall not be worn while in uniform or in a duty status.
  • Smocked bolero, and flare skirt with shirred to having box-plaited sides and velvet girdle.
British Dictionary definitions for plaited


a length of hair, ribbon, etc, that has been plaited
(in Britain) a loaf of bread of several twisting or intertwining parts
a rare spelling of pleat
(transitive) to intertwine (strands or strips) in a pattern
Word Origin
C15 pleyt, from Old French pleit, from Latin plicāre to fold; see ply²
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for plaited



late 14c., "to fold, gather in pleats," also "to braid or weave," from Old French pleir "to fold," variant of ploier, ployer "to fold, bend," from Latin plicare "to fold" (see ply (v.1)). Related: Plaited; plaiting.


c.1400, "a fold, a crease," from Anglo-French pleit, Old French ploit, earlier pleit, "fold, manner of folding," from Latin plicatus, past participle of plicare "to lay, fold, twist" (see ply (v.1)). Meaning "interlaced strands of hair, ribbon, etc." is from 1520s, perhaps from plait (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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