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dean1

[deen] /din/
noun
1.
Education.
  1. the head of a faculty, school, or administrative division in a university or college:
    the dean of admissions.
  2. an official in an American college or secondary school having charge of student personnel services, such as counseling or discipline:
    the dean of men.
  3. the official in charge of undergraduate students at an English university.
2.
Ecclesiastical.
  1. the head of the chapter of a cathedral or a collegiate church.
  2. Also called vicar forane. a priest in the Roman Catholic Church appointed by a bishop to take care of the affairs of a division of a diocese.
3.
the senior member, in length of service, of any group, organization, profession, etc.:
the dean of lexicographers.
Origin of dean1
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English deen < Anglo-French deen, dean, Old French deien < Late Latin decānus chief of ten, equivalent to Latin dec(em) ten + -ānus -an
Related forms
deanship, noun

dean2

[deen] /din/
noun, British
1.
dene.

Dean

[deen] /din/
noun
1.
James (Byron) 1931–55, U.S. actor.
2.
Jay Hanna ("Dizzy") 1911–74, U.S. baseball pitcher.
3.
a male given name: from the Old English family name meaning “valley.”.

dene

or dean

[deen] /din/
noun, British
1.
a bare, sandy tract or low sand hill near the sea.
Origin
1815-20; earlier den, in same sense, Middle English (in phrase den and strond); perhaps to be identified with Middle English dene, Old English denu, dænu valley
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for dean
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This was in reality the beginning of Mrs. dean's carefully laid plan.

    Marjorie Dean Pauline Lester
  • Tis none other that the dean sets forth, ay, and the book that I have here.

    The Armourer's Prentices Charlotte M. Yonge
  • I might now be dean of a college or a second Dr. Frank Crane.

    Bizarre Lawton Mackall
  • "We shall be obliged to look into the matter," declared the dean.

  • If it were the dean, now—but, oh no, certainly not the Head.

    The Casual Ward A. D. Godley
British Dictionary definitions for dean

dean

/diːn/
noun
1.
the chief administrative official of a college or university faculty
2.
(at Oxford and Cambridge universities) a college fellow with responsibility for undergraduate discipline
3.
(mainly Church of England) the head of a chapter of canons and administrator of a cathedral or collegiate church
4.
(RC Church) the cardinal bishop senior by consecration and head of the college of cardinals See also rural dean related adjective decanal
Derived Forms
deanship, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French deien, from Late Latin decānus one set over ten persons, from Latin decem ten

Dean1

/diːn/
noun
1.
Forest of Dean, a forest in W England, in Gloucestershire, between the Rivers Severn and Wye: formerly a royal hunting ground

Dean2

/diːn/
noun
1.
Christopher. See Torvill and Dean
2.
James (Byron). 1931–55, US film actor, who became a cult figure; his films include East of Eden and Rebel Without a Cause (both 1955). He died in a car crash

dene1

/diːn/
noun
1.
(Brit) a valley, esp one that is narrow and wooded
Word Origin
Old English denu valley; see den

dene2

/diːn/
noun
1.
(dialect, mainly Southern English) a sandy stretch of land or dune near the sea
Word Origin
C13: probably related to Old English dūn hill; see down³

Dene

/ˈdɛnɪ; ˈdɛneɪ/
plural noun
1.
the North American Indian peoples of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories in Canada. The official body representing them is called the Dene Nation
Word Origin
via French déné, from Athapascan dene people
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for dean
n.

early 14c., from Old French deien (12c., Modern French doyen), from Late Latin decanus "head of a group of 10 monks in a monastery," from earlier secular meaning "commander of 10 soldiers" (which was extended to civil administrators in the late empire), from Greek dekanos, from deka "ten" (see ten). Replaced Old English teoðingealdor. College sense is from 1570s (in Latin from late 13c.).

dene

n.

"small valley," from Old English denu "valley" (see den).

"bare, sandy tract by the sea," late 13c., of uncertain origin, perhaps connected to dune, but the sense difference is difficult.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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