verb (used without object)

  1. to continue in the same state; continue to be as specified: to remain at peace.
  2. to stay behind or in the same place: to remain at home; I’ll remain here when you go to the airport.
  3. to be left after the removal, loss, destruction, etc., of all else: The front wall is all that remains of the fort.
  4. to be left to be done, told, shown, etc.: Only the dishwashing remains.
  5. to be reserved or in store.


  1. Usually remains. something that remains or is left.
  2. remains,
    1. miscellaneous, fragmentary, or other writings still unpublished at the time of an author’s death.
    2. traces of some quality, condition, etc.
    3. a dead body; corpse.
    4. parts or substances remaining from animal or plant life that occur in the earth’s crust or strata: fossil remains; organic remains.

verb (mainly intr)

  1. to stay behind or in the same placeto remain at home; only Tom remained
  2. (copula) to continue to beto remain cheerful
  3. to be left, as after use, consumption, the passage of time, etca little wine still remained in the bottle
  4. to be left to be done, said, etcit remains to be pointed out

early 15c., from Anglo-French remayn-, Old French remain-, stressed stem of remanoir “stay, dwell, remain; be left; hold out,” from Latin remanere “to remain, to stay behind; be left behind; endure, abide, last” (cf. Spanish remaner, Italian rimanere), from re- “back” (see re-) + manere “to stay, remain” (see mansion). Related: Remained; remaining.


“those left over or surviving,” mid-15c., from Middle French remain, back-formation from Old French remanoir, remaindre, or else formed in Middle English from remain (v.). But the more usual noun in English has been remainder except in remains, euphemism for “corpse,” attested from c.1700, from mortal remains.

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