play about

phrasal verb
played about; playing about; plays about

Definition of play about

British
1 : to have sex with someone who is not one's husband, wife, or regular partner He's not the kind of guy who plays about. often + on She's been playing about on her husband. often + with She's been playing about with one of her coworkers.
2 : to deal with or treat something in a careless way When it comes to protecting his family, he doesn't play about. often + with You can't play about with diabetes; it's a very serious disease.
3 : to use or do something in a way that is not very serious It's time to stop playing about and get busy. often + on I spent the evening playing about on the piano/computer/Internet. often + with I'm not really a painter; I just like to play about with paints.

Learn More About play about

Dictionary Entries Near play about

playa

play about

playact

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for play about

Cite this Entry

“Play about.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/play%20about. Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!