1 chief or principal in rank, importance, size, etc.
2 sheer or utmost (esp. in the phrase by main force)
3 (Nautical) of, relating to, or denoting any gear, such as a stay or sail, belonging to the mainmast
4 Obsolete significant or important
5 a principal pipe, conduit, duct, or line in a system used to distribute water, electricity, etc.
a the main distribution network for water, gas, or electricity
b (as modifier)
7 the chief or most important part or consideration
8 great strength or force (now chiefly in the phrase (with) might and main)
9 Literary the open ocean
10 Archaic short for →
11 Archaic short for →
in (or for) the main on the whole; for the most part
(C13: from Old English mægen strength)
English Collins Dictionary - English Definition & Thesaurus
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"Collins English Dictionary 5th Edition first published in 2000 © HarperCollins Publishers 1979, 1986, 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000 and Collins A-Z Thesaurus 1st edition first published in 1995 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995"