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plaintive

[pleyn-tiv] /ˈpleɪn tɪv/
adjective
1.
expressing sorrow or melancholy; mournful:
a plaintive melody.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; plaint + -ive; replacing Middle English plaintif < Middle French
Related forms
plaintively, adverb
plaintiveness, noun
Can be confused
plaintiff, plaintive.
Synonyms
wistful, sorrowful, sad.
Antonyms
happy, joyful.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for plaintively
  • Neighbouring countries continue to call plaintively for a peaceful vote.
  • Bulgarians point out plaintively that corruption is a problem elsewhere too.
  • Whole stretches are plaintively tonal and colorfully scored, music at once elegant and fraught with tension.
  • In the tops of the trees the wind began to play, disturbing the sleeping birds so that they flew about calling plaintively.
  • He lifts his gray, furry head half an inch and meows plaintively.
British Dictionary definitions for plaintively

plaintive

/ˈpleɪntɪv/
adjective
1.
expressing melancholy; mournful
Derived Forms
plaintively, adverb
plaintiveness, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French plaintif grieving, from plainteplaint
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 plaintively

plaintive

adj.

late 14c., "lamenting," from Old French plaintif "complaining; wretched, miserable," from plainte (see plaint). Sense of "mournful, sad" first recorded 1570s. Related: Plaintively; plaintiveness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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