complain

verb
com·​plain | \ kəm-ˈplān How to pronounce complain (audio) \
complained; complaining; complains

Definition of complain

intransitive verb

1 : to express grief, pain, or discontent complaining about the weather
2 : to make a formal accusation or charge He threatened to complain of him to the captain.

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Other Words from complain

complainer noun
complainingly \ kəm-​ˈplā-​niŋ-​lē How to pronounce complainingly (audio) \ adverb

Examples of complain in a Sentence

He works hard but he never complains. If you're unhappy with the service, you should complain to the manager. The students complained that the test was too hard. “These shoes are too tight,” he complained.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Mother of Dragons hilariously teased her costar Kit Harington (Jon Snow) for complaining that his GoT shoots are intense. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Emilia Clarke Just Called Out Kit Harington for Complaining About His Game of Thrones Shoots," 3 Apr. 2019 Thank you to my amazing husband for being so supportive while his new bride was complaining and a little more cray than usual. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "When Is Christina El Moussa and Ant Anstead's Baby Due?," 26 Mar. 2019 This week's feud began when Trump complained on Twitter that the former veteran shared the Steele dossier (which alleged there were links between Trump and Russian officials) before the 2016 election, though this has not been proven. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'The View' Fans Are Fired Up After Meghan McCain and Ana Navarro-Cárdenas's Trump Comments," 22 Mar. 2019 Chilean fishermen began complaining of Type D whales wrecking havoc on their lines. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Spot Mysterious Unknown Breed of Killer Whales," 8 Mar. 2019 Intel That doesn’t help Microsoft, whose executives complained repeatedly that Windows as a whole was suffering because of it. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft's Surface sales soar to nearly $2 billion, though chip shortages are hurting," 31 Jan. 2019 My husband, thankfully, doesn’t complain about this. Marina Liao, Marie Claire, "What I Wear to Work: Amirah Kassem, Founder of Flour Shop," 25 Feb. 2019 But whatever exertions the powertrain was making the 300h didn’t complain. Dan Neil, WSJ, "Lexus ES 300h: Spend on the Luxury, Save on Gas Money," 24 Jan. 2019 And, to be fair, the vast majority of people complaining about the bug just seem to be treating it as a random and quizzical oddity of the social network that nobody can explain right now. Nick Statt, The Verge, "Facebook confirms years-old messages are randomly coming back to haunt users," 27 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'complain.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of complain

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for complain

Middle English compleynen, from Anglo-French compleindre, from Vulgar Latin *complangere, from Latin com- + plangere to lament — more at plaint

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Statistics for complain

Last Updated

8 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for complain

The first known use of complain was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for complain

complain

verb

English Language Learners Definition of complain

: to say or write that you are unhappy, sick, uncomfortable, etc., or that you do not like something
: to say (something that expresses annoyance or unhappiness)

complain

verb
com·​plain | \ kəm-ˈplān How to pronounce complain (audio) \
complained; complaining

Kids Definition of complain

: to express grief, pain, or discontent : find fault

Other Words from complain

complainer noun
com·​plain | \ kəm-ˈplān How to pronounce complain (audio) \

Medical Definition of complain

: to speak of one's illness or symptoms the patient visited the office complaining of weight loss

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com·​plain

Legal Definition of complain

: to make a complaint

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More from Merriam-Webster on complain

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for complain

Spanish Central: Translation of complain

Nglish: Translation of complain for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of complain for Arabic Speakers

Comments on complain

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