Definition of plaything in US English:



  • 1A toy.

    • ‘These innovations made possible more playthings per child as well more variety and novelty in playthings, making children's products part of an emerging fashion industry.’
    • ‘And like many children's toys today, playthings for pets are becoming more technological and educational.’
    • ‘She shows the playthings and toys to the children, yet will not reveal his gift, which she claims she will give him later that night.’
    • ‘The room was no longer littered with his playthings, his toys from yesteryear.’
    • ‘By providing shared playthings like building blocks and story books and arranging sing-songs, the organisation is encouraging children to play together as normal and put their strange circumstances out of their minds for awhile.’
    • ‘Americans continue to spend more on imported playthings, though fewer toys and games are being exported from the U.S.’
    • ‘But many toy makers are also worried that some playthings that once seemed fantastical now seem all too real.’
    • ‘One type of toy, Appalachian primitive dolls, has been a standard plaything for many children in the mountain communities of Alabama and northwards.’
    • ‘For plastic children's playthings, manufacturers often add a chemical as a softener.’
    • ‘You have to admit, even if they are the plastic playthings of young boys and the result of many years of study and research by adults, they do play on the imagination.’
    • ‘Even as a child, toy soldiers and toy guns were my favorite playthings.’
    • ‘The toy appeared strangely incongruous, almost an antique among the plastic playthings that littered the floor.’
    • ‘Leftists think little boys can be ‘educated’ into preferring dolls to trucks as playthings whereas conservatives think they cannot.’
    • ‘Big-hearted Evening Press readers have stepped in to supply new playthings for sick children - after thieves raided their toy cupboard.’
    • ‘Toy industry experts say that such war-themed playthings will be booming this Christmas.’
    • ‘The American and Japanese conquest of European and Asian toy markets meant the reduction of regional styles of playthings and a shift away from toys that imitated adult worlds of work and life.’
    • ‘When a battered child looks at his bruises and cries out for help, his favourite plaything - the computer by his bedside - could be his saviour.’
    • ‘Children's spontaneous play is closely related to their creative activities of drawing, painting, and music-even children's construction of toys or playthings from scrap materials.’
    • ‘I cannot bear the plethora of tacky, pointless, plasticy, badly constructed, playthings that are manufactured these days.’
    • ‘When do dolls cease to be mere playthings and pretty exhibits and assume a far more profound role?’
    toy, game, amusement
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A person treated as amusing but unimportant by someone else.
      ‘she was the mistress and plaything of a wealthy businessman’
      • ‘And girls, if you're bringing in your favourite plaything, you should at least try to make it look like you want him to get involved.’
      • ‘He treated her like a plaything, and she hated and feared him.’
      • ‘Why are you treating me like some kind of plaything!’
      • ‘With Makoto now on the defensive and Inoue treated as a plaything, the entire situation looked grim for the entire village and even bleaker for the two defenders.’
      • ‘Treating people like pawns and playthings in your own private emotional board game is cruel and callous.’
      • ‘Additionally they suggest strung puppets, and underline the subjects' impotence as playthings of a malign destiny.’
      • ‘It's easy to treat them as little playthings, forgetting they are highly insightful and sensitive.’
      • ‘He soon realizes that he is only a toy, a plaything for his enemy, kept alive as a showcase of human inferiority.’
      • ‘People don't learn responsibility by being treated with contempt, by being playthings for other people's political agendas, or by being told that they can have a say in things except when it matters.’
      • ‘Sacrificed and captured, she becomes first a trophy and then an amusing plaything.’
      • ‘We're not playthings, we're not your little toys you can use to play God!’
      • ‘The people that surrounded her were nothing but dolls, playthings of a sick man who had stuffed them like hunting trophies, sewn back together to fill in a demented dream of perfection.’
      • ‘He loved the matron like no other, but to her, he was a servant, a plaything, to be treated as she pleased, and discarded when she tired of him.’