MAIN, a. [L. magnus.]1. Principal; chief; that which has most power in producing an effect, or which is mostly regarded in prospect; as the main branch or tributary stream of a river; the main timbers of an edifice; a main design; a main object. Our main interest is to be as happy as we can, and as long as possible.2. Mighty; vast; as the main abyss.3. Important; powerful. This young prince, with a train of young noblemen and gentlemen, not with any main army, came over to take possession of his patrimony.
MAIN, n. Strength; force; violent effort; as in the phrase, "with might and main."1. The gross; the bulk; the greater part. The main of them may be reduced to language and an improvement in wisdom--2. The ocean; the great sea, as distinguished from rivers, bays, sounds and the like. He fell, and struggling in the main--3. The continent, as distinguished from an isle. We arrived at Nantucket on Saturday, but did not reach the main till Monday. In this use of the word, land is omitted; main for main land.4. A hamper.5. A course; a duct.
For the main, in the main, for the most part; in the greatest part.
MAIN, n. [L. manus, hand.] A hand at dice. We throw a merry main. And lucky mains make people wise. [Not used.]1. A match at cock fighting.