lay Definition

  • 1to put something down in a flat position
  • 2to produce eggs as a female bird or reptile
  • 3to prepare a dead body for burial

Using lay: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "lay" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    He lay the book on the table.

  • Example

    The hen will lay an egg every day.

  • Example

    The funeral director will lay the deceased to rest.

lay Synonyms and Antonyms

Antonyms for lay

Phrases with lay

  • the general situation or state of affairs in a particular area or with regard to a particular topic


    Before starting the project, it's important to get the lay of the land and understand the challenges we may face.

  • to keep a low profile or stay hidden in order to avoid detection or trouble


    After the scandal broke out, the politician decided to lay low for a while.

  • to find or obtain something, often something that is difficult to locate or acquire


    I've been trying to lay my hands on a copy of that book for months.

Origins of lay

from Old English 'lecgan', meaning 'to place or put down'


Summary: lay in Brief

The verb 'lay' [leɪ] means to put something down in a flat position, to produce eggs as a female bird or reptile, or to prepare a dead body for burial. It can be used in phrases like 'lay of the land,' referring to the general situation, or 'lay low,' meaning to keep a low profile. 'Lay hands on' means to find or obtain something.

How do native speakers use this expression?