Denotation vs. Connotation


[han-suh m] /ˈhæn səm/
a low-hung, two-wheeled, covered vehicle drawn by one horse, for two passengers, with the driver being mounted on an elevated seat behind and the reins running over the roof.
any similar horse-drawn vehicle.
Also called hansom cab.
Origin of hansom
1850-55; named after J. A. Hansom (1803-82), English architect who designed it Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hansom
Historical Examples
  • A sound of wheels turning in at the lodge-gates—it is Maurice's hansom.

    Vera Nevill Mrs. H. Lovett Cameron
  • Get this gentleman's luggage, and bring it to that hansom there.

    The Foolish Lovers St. John G. Ervine
  • At that moment Agnes drove up in a hansom; she ran up the little garden, and carried out Evelyn's bag and placed it in the hansom.

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • There are four-wheeled cabs, and there is even a hansom to be had.

  • Arrived there, however, I deposited my luggage in the cloak-room and drove back to Claridge's in a hansom.

    The Lost Ambassador E. Phillips Oppenheim
  • We won't say a word about terms; I'll pay you all that's left over from my hansom fares.'

    A Woman Intervenes Robert Barr
  • It was in the Fullham Road that we glided close behind a hansom bowling along at a rattling pace.

    The Princess Passes Alice Muriel Williamson and Charles Norris Williamson
  • He told me that the Marquis owned the hansom; for I asked him whose it was.

    A Woman Intervenes Robert Barr
  • Then he got into a hansom and drove up to the house in the Edgware Road.

    Sunrise William Black
  • On reaching the hansom, she handed up the slip of paper to the driver.

    A Woman Intervenes Robert Barr
British Dictionary definitions for hansom


(sometimes capital) a two-wheeled one-horse carriage with a fixed hood. The driver sits on a high outside seat at the rear Also called hansom cab
Word Origin
C19: short for hansom cab, named after its designer J. A. Hansom (1803–82)
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 hansom

"two-wheeled, two-person cab," 1847, from James A. Hansom (1803-1882), English architect who designed such a vehicle c.1834.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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