Definition of ply in English:


Syllabification: ply
Pronunciation: /plī

noun (plural plies)

1A thickness or layer of a folded or laminated material.
More example sentences
  • Gauze or gauze-like products are typically manufactured as a single piece of material folded into a several ply gauze pad.
  • The chassis was a typical composite ‘sandwich’ with inner and outer skins made up of woven laminated plies.
  • With built-up membranes, ‘thicker is better’ refers to the number of plies and not necessarily the measured thickness of the finished roof.
layer, thickness, strand, sheet, leaf
1.1 [usually in combination] A strand of yarn or rope: [as modifier]: four-ply yarn
More example sentences
  • A nice dense thread or 3-8 ply yarn seams to work quite nicely for a blanket stitch.
  • A rope is a ply of natural threads or synthetic fibers.
  • The ply yarns are twisted together to form cord- and the cord is the actual material used in the weaving process.
1.2The number of layers or strands of which something is made: the yarn can be any ply from two to eight
More example sentences
  • Another benefit of multiple plies is their insulating quality.
  • Even things like toilet paper came in only 1 ply or 2.
  • Mr. Johnston noted that it was apparent that the roof of the stair tower had been done after the completion of the main roof, thus resulting in some 8 plies of felt building up at the connection.
1.3 [usually in combination] A reinforcing layer of fabric in a tire: [as modifier]: a six-ply whitewall tire
2 short for plywood.
More example sentences
  • The table, as well as the maple ply and cast-steel dining chairs, are easily wiped clean after meals.
  • Although this route is more expensive than a roof coating, the single ply can be installed as a re-cover, saving the cost of tear off, if the existing roof is less than 25 percent wet.
  • Mr Constable has also designed his own home kitchen using hoop pine and maple ply.
3(In game theory) the number of levels at which branching occurs in a tree of possible outcomes, typically corresponding to the number of moves ahead (in chess strictly half-moves ahead) considered by a computer program.
More example sentences
  • This creates a ‘tree’ of analysis with moves branching at each ply.
  • This will likely include dozens of lines and several first ply candidate moves.
3.1A half-move (i.e., one player’s move) in computer chess.
More example sentences
  • For example, suppose the chances that the move at each ply of a specific line your are considering are only 40% each.
  • After a few minutes Sargon 4 was up to 7 ply and it said the best move was 19 Bd6.


late Middle English (in the sense 'fold'): from French pli 'fold', from the verb plier, from Latin plicare 'to fold'.

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Pronunciation: ˌhɪpnə(ʊ)ˈpɒmpɪk
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