What is another word for play?

Need synonyms for play? Here's a list of words from our thesaurus that you can use instead.

Engage in activity for enjoyment and recreation
“They felt at peace watching their children play contentedly together.”
(sports) To compete against
“Fans are excited at the prospect of seeing Roger play Rafael again in the final of the Grand Slam.”
To participate in a game
“My nephew always wants to play Uno with us.”
To present a portrayal or performance of
“In his latest role, Oscar would play an impulsive, trigger-happy flyboy who did not impress his admiral.”
To gamble
“Warren is a skillful investor who knows how to play the market.”
To deal with (something), usually effectively
“We really need to figure out how to play this delicate situation.”
(colloquial) To deceive someone
“I think the cab driver just played us. The fare was too expensive!”
(based on instrument used) To produce music
“Nelson was a very talented musician who could play several instruments.”
(based on the game being played) To strike a ball as part of a game
Play the ball strategically.”
To move lightly and quickly, so as to appear and disappear
“A small smile played across his lips as their eyes met.”
Activity engaged in for enjoyment and recreation, especially by children
“Play areas, and the equipment in them, should be developed to encourage adventurous play.”
A dramatic work for the stage or to be broadcast
“This tightly-crafted play lives up to the writer's reputation for delivering unexpected twists.”
The state of being active, operative, or effective
“This is when significant campaigning by influential people begins to come into play.”
A clever, often underhanded, means to achieve an end
“We need to come up with a clever play to close the sale.”
The space in or through which a mechanism can or does move
“Since then, there's been a lot of play in the steering.”
The scope or freedom to act or operate
“It also recognizes the fact that the full play of markets may create problems for society.”
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