from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An orderly or step-by-step conception or proposal for accomplishing an objective.
  • noun A proposed or intended course of action.
  • noun A systematic arrangement of elements or important parts; a configuration or outline.
  • noun A drawing or diagram made to scale showing the structure or arrangement of something.
  • noun In perspective rendering, one of several imaginary planes perpendicular to the line of vision between the viewer and the object being depicted.
  • noun A program or policy stipulating a service or benefit.
  • intransitive verb To formulate a scheme or program for the accomplishment, enactment, or attainment of.
  • intransitive verb To have as a specific aim or purpose; intend.
  • intransitive verb To draw or make a graphic representation of.
  • intransitive verb To make plans.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The representation of anything drawn on a plane, as a map or chart; specifically, the representation of a building or other structure in horizontal section, as it stands or is intended to stand on the ground, showing its extent, and the division and distribution of its area into apartments, rooms, passages, etc., or its method of construction and the relation of its parts.
  • noun Disposition of parts according to a certain design.
  • noun A formulated scheme for the accomplishment of some object or the attainment of an end; the various steps which have been thought out and decided upon for the carrying out of some project or operation.
  • noun A method or process; a way; a custom.
  • noun A type of structure: as, man is the highest development of the vertebrate plan; the plan of a mollusk or an insect.
  • noun In Ireland, a system of procedure formed in 1886 and supported by the National League. The officers of the League, acting as trustees, receive the rent of tenants on rack-rented estates; this money, less a certain abatement demanded by the tenants, is offered to the landlord; if the latter refuses it, it is used for support in cases of eviction.
  • noun Plan, Scheme, Project, Design, plot. Design may represent the end which a plan, scheme, or project is intended to promote. They all indicate thought given to the general aim and to the details. Scheme is the most likely to represent something speculative or visionary : as, he was full of schemes; project stands next to it in this respect, but project may also be the most definite or concrete : as, a project for building a bridge. Plan is the least definite; design and plan may be very indefinite, or have a concrete sense : as, a design or plan of going away; a design or plan of a house. Scheme is often used in a bad sense; design sometimes.
  • To lay down on paper the different parts, divisions, dimensions, and methods of construction of (a machine, ship, building, etc.): as, to plan an edifice.
  • To scheme; lay plans for; devise ways and means for: as, to plan the conquest of a country; to plan one's escape.
  • Synonyms To figure, sketch out, delineate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A draught or form; properly, a representation drawn on a plane, as a map or a chart; especially, a top view, as of a machine, or the representation or delineation of a horizontal section of anything, as of a building; a graphic representation; a diagram.
  • noun A scheme devised; a method of action or procedure expressed or described in language; a project
  • noun A method; a way of procedure; a custom.
  • noun etc. See under Body, Floor, etc.
  • transitive verb To form a delineation of; to draught; to represent, as by a diagram.
  • transitive verb To scheme; to devise; to contrive; to form in design.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A drawing showing technical details of a building, machine, etc., with unwanted details omitted, and often using symbols rather than detailed drawing to represent doors, valves, etc.
  • noun A set of intended actions, usually mutually related, through which one expects to achieve a goal.
  • noun A 2-dimensional drawing of a building as seen from above with obscuring or irrelevant details such as roof removed, or of a floor of a building, revealing the internal layout; as distinct from the elevation.
  • verb transitive To design (a building, machine, etc.)
  • verb transitive To create a plan for.
  • verb intransitive To intend.
  • verb See plan on.
  • verb intransitive To make a plan.

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

  • noun an arrangement scheme
  • verb make a design of; plan out in systematic, often graphic form
  • noun scale drawing of a structure
  • verb make or work out a plan for; devise
  • verb have the will and intention to carry out some action
  • verb make plans for something
  • noun a series of steps to be carried out or goals to be accomplished


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

[French, alteration (influenced by plan, flat surface) of plant, ground plan, map, from planter, to plant, from Latin plantāre, from planta, sole of the foot; see plat- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French plan ("a ground-plot of a building"), from plan ("flat"), a later form of the vernacular plain, from Latin planus ("flat, plane"); see plain, plane.


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  • _ "Not content with this, Dr. Worcester gives it once more under PLAN:" L. _planus_, flat; It. _piano_, a plan; Sp. _piano; _ Fr. _plan.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 05, No. 31, May, 1860 Various

  • But it will take a further step in advance when it reverts to that plan on the footing above indicated; when it adopts the _plan_ without the evils which in an ignorant and undeveloped age necessarily accompanied it.

    Continental Monthly , Vol. 6, No. 1, July, 1864 Devoted to Literature and National Policy. Various

  • But as it was intended to be a poem on _Ariosto's plan, _ that _is_ to _say_ on _no plan_ at all, and, as is usual in similar cases, having a predilection for the worst passages, I shall retain those parts, though I cannot venture to defend them.

    The Works of Lord Byron: Letters and Journals. Vol. 1 George Gordon Byron Byron 1806

  • Let me know if you plan to be there livechina United Mines, Inc. Board Hires Exclusive Representative for Greater China and ... richardcolback #plan 2010 Wilbur K.

    Gaea Times (by Simple Thoughts) Breaking News and incisive views 24/7 Pan Pylas 2010

  • The alliance and others are also lobbying the City Council to confirm the building as a landmark and supporters of the designation plan to turn out in large numbers at Thursday's meeting of the landmarks subcommittee.

    Bowery Building Set as Landmark, or Maybe Not Laura Kusisto 2011

  • But the general thrust of the McCain plan is one that he championed before he became an Obama staffer, now his job is to criticize that very plan.

    Archive 2008-09-01 xtra 2008

  • But the general thrust of the McCain plan is one that he championed before he became an Obama staffer, now his job is to criticize that very plan.

    The Things Campaigns Do to You xtra 2008

  • The McCain plan is that as you make more we will cut your taxes more - which is always the Republican plan but sometimes they are not as open about it.

    Easter Lemming Liberal News 2008

  • The main plan is to do something I continue to love, but these will also be available when done in large print form, small print form, and the best news, book form.

    EXTRALIFE – By Scott Johnson - My Next Project: “42 Robots” 2008

  • A top economic advisor said that the Clinton and McCain plan is ludacris.

    Bill Clinton: High oil prices here to stay 2008

  • One of the things that all the pregnancy-advice books tell you to do is to put together a “birth plan,” which is essentially a delusional itinerary that you write for how you want this event you’ve never experienced to go, which you then give to doctors and nurses who have assisted on thousands of births, in order to make them hate you.

    My Slightly Unreal Pandemic Pregnancy Condé Nast 2021


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