Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To express feelings of pain, dissatisfaction, or resentment.
  • intransitive v. To make a formal accusation or bring a formal charge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To express feelings of pain, dissatisfaction, or resentment.
  • v. To make a formal accusation or bring a formal charge.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To give utterance to expression of grief, pain, censure, regret. etc.; to lament; to murmur; to find fault; -- commonly used with of. Also, to creak or squeak, as a timber or wheel.
  • intransitive v. To make a formal accusation; to make a charge.
  • transitive v. To lament; to bewail.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To utter expressions of grief, pain, uneasiness, censure, resentment, or dissatisfaction; lament or murmur about anything; find fault.
  • Figuratively, to make a sound resembling that of lamentation or suffering; emit a mournful sound or noise: as, the complaining wind; the sea complains dismally.
  • To utter an expression of discomfort or sorrow from some cause; speak of the suffering of anything: with of: as, to complain of headache, of poverty, or of wrong.
  • To make a formal accusation against a person, or on account of anything; make a charge: with of.
  • Synonyms To bewail, repine, grieve, mourn, grumble, croak.
  • To lament; bewail; deplore.
  • n. Complaint; outcry.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. express complaints, discontent, displeasure, or unhappiness
  • v. make a formal accusation; bring a formal charge

Etymologies

Middle English compleinen, from Old French complaindre, complaign-, from Vulgar Latin *complangere : Latin com-, intensive pref.; see com- + Latin plangere, to lament; see plāk-2 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English complaynen, from Old French complaindre, from Medieval Latin complangere ("to bewail, complain"), from Latin com- ("together") + plangere ("to strike, beat, as the breast in extreme grief, bewail"); see plain, plaint. (Wiktionary)

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