Definitions

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

  • n. One that plays, especially:
  • n. One who participates in a game or sport.
  • n. A gambler.
  • n. One who performs in theatrical roles.
  • n. One who plays a musical instrument.
  • n. An active participant: a major player in world affairs.
  • n. The mechanism actuating a player piano.
  • n. A machine that reproduces recorded audio or audio-visual material.
  • n. Slang One who actively seeks out sexual partners and carries on a number of sexual affairs at the same time.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. One who plays any game or sport.
  • n. One who plays a part in something; a character
  • n. An actor in a dramatic play.
  • n. One who plays on a musical instrument.
  • n. One who is playful, given to games and other amusement; one without serious aims; an idler; a trifler.
  • n. A gamer; a gamester.
  • n. A gambler.
  • n. A person who plays the field rather than having a long-term sexual relationship.
  • n. An electronic device that plays audio and/or video media, such as CD player.
  • n. A software application that plays audio and/or video.
  • adj. of something that "plays" itself, like certain automated devices

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who plays, or amuses himself; one without serious aims; an idler; a trifler.
  • n. One who plays any game.
  • n. A dramatic actor.
  • n. One who plays on an instrument of music.
  • n. A gamester; a gambler.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who plays.
  • n. A contestant in a game or match of any kind; also, one who is in the habit of playing, or who is skilled in, a particular game : as, a chess-player; a billiard-player.
  • n. A dramatic performer; an actor; one who enacts characters on the stage.
  • n. One who performs on an instrument of music.
  • n. In harness-manuf., a small piece of metal attached by links to the mouthpiece of the bridle.

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

  • n. someone who plays a musical instrument (as a profession)
  • n. an important participant (as in a business deal)
  • n. a theatrical performer
  • n. a person who participates in or is skilled at some game
  • n. a person who pursues a number of different social and sexual partners simultaneously

Etymologies

From Middle English playere, from Old English pleġere ("player, athlete, wrestler"), equivalent to play +‎ -er. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • No word yet on which NFL player will try to pull this off, though noted soccer lover and self-professed soccer player� Chad Ochocinco seems like a prime candidate.

    Soccer Blogs - latest posts

  • The pursuit by Sosa, a Latin player from the Dominican Republic, was entertaining but doomed, Bonds declared.

    Matthew Yglesias » Change the Story

  • The main American player is Brian Linden, 47 years old, who came to China in 1984 and has been here most of the time since.

    Village Dreamers

  • You are so right - the main player is the ripe tomato!

    Pico de gallo recipe | Homesick Texan

  • For all the anxiety over his hitting—the Examiner concluded that his “was the most prolonged slump for a name player in modern history”—Mays had for him a typical, which is to say brilliant, season.

    WILLIE MAYS

  • One year it's because a certain player didn't get chosen to start the game, the next year it's because another player is left off the roster altogether.

    USATODAY.com - Do All-Star managers have too much power?

  • Much like Batman, the title player in "The Cape" isn't really super.

    msnbc.com: Top msnbc.com headlines

  • My only question here is, according to the rules of golf a player is allowed a maximum of 14 clubs in his bag, am I going to have to sacrifice my five wood to put this in?

    Weekend Diversion

  • The issue of whether the manager or the player is the better long-term asset centres on how much longer Ferguson plans to stay on and whether his influence will be exerted on the succession regime.

    Who do Manchester United value most: Sir Alex Ferguson or Wayne Rooney?

  • Playing it in Firefox (3.6, and 3. 5-whatever it was before [over the last couple weeks]) the player is a little weird.

    Episode 002

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Comments

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  • Another is: "The horse raced past the barn fell".

    September 9, 2007

  • A parsing challenge: "The player kicked the ball kicked him."

    September 9, 2007