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Alternative formsEdit


play house (plural play houses)

  1. A child's toy domestic dwelling, either for dolls or large enough for the child to enter.
    Synonyms: (for dolls): doll's house, (for children): cubby house, toyhouse, Wendy house
    Hypernyms: toy, house



play house (third-person singular simple present plays house, present participle playing house, simple past and past participle played house)

  1. To act out traditional housekeeping and family roles.
    Little girls seem to enjoy playing house more than little boys.
  2. To live as if married without actually being legally married.
    • 1981, Emily Toth, Inside Peyton Place: the life of Grace Metalious, page 209:
      Though she flaunted her affair with TJ, Grace never admitted in print that she and George had “played house” before their marriage. Instead, she claimed they were married in 1942
    • 2009, Fisher Ellie Slott, Mom There's a Man in the Kitchen and He's Wearing Your Robe:
      Playing House Instead / There are times you may find it more appropriate to live with someone rather than rush into marriage.
    • 2010, Kim Stafford, Damage, page 122:
      I really don't like you playing house with the kids around. I don't want the kids to think that it's okay to live together without commitment.