1. The act of one who, or that which, lays.
2. The act or period of laying eggs; the eggs laid for one incubation; a clutch.
3. The first coat on laths of plasterer's two-coat work.
Lay v. t. [imp. & p. p. Laid p. pr. & vb. n. Laying.]
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 Cæneus laid Ortygius on the plain,
The victor Cæneus 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. 19.
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. liii. 6.
11. To impute; to charge; to allege.
God layeth not folly to them. --Job xxiv. 12.
Lay the fault on us. --Shak.
12. To impose, as a command or a duty; as, to lay commands on one.
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. --Byron.
-- 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. --Bacon.
-- 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 suicide.
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 it on thick, to flatter excessively.
To lay on, to apply with force; to inflict; as, to lay on blows.
To lay on load, to lay on blows; to strike violently. [Obs. ∨ 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 garden. (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 restraint.
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 ship.
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.
n : the production of eggs (especially in birds) [syn: egg