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Yours, Etc.: Origins and Uses of 8 Sign-Offs

van1

[van] /væn/
noun
1.
the foremost or front division of an army, a fleet, or any group leading an advance or in position to lead an advance.
2.
those who are in the forefront of a movement or the like.
3.
the forefront in any movement, course of progress, or the like.
Origin
1600-1610
1600-10; short for vanguard

van2

[van] /væn/
noun
1.
a covered vehicle, usually a large truck or trailer, used for moving furniture, goods, animals, etc.
2.
a smaller boxlike vehicle that resembles a panel truck, often has double doors both at the rear and along the curb side, and that can be used as a truck, fitted with rows of seats, or equipped with living quarters for traveling and camping.
3.
British.
  1. a railway baggage car.
  2. a covered, boxlike railway car, as one used to carry freight.
  3. a small, horse-drawn wagon or a small truck, as one used by tradespeople to carry light goods.
4.
Also called van conversion. a conventional van whose cargo area has been equipped with living facilities, extra windows, and often increased headroom.
verb (used with object), vanned, vanning.
5.
to transport or carry (freight, passengers, etc.) in a van.
verb (used without object), vanned, vanning.
6.
to travel in a van.
Origin
1820-30; short for caravan

van4

[van] /væn/
noun
1.
a wing.
Origin
1400-50;late Middle English, variant of fan1

Van

[van; for 1, 2 also Turkish vahn] /væn; for 1, 2 also Turkish vɑn/
noun
1.
Lake, a salt lake in E Turkey. 1454 sq. mi. (3766 sq. km).
2.
a town on this lake.
3.
a male given name.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for vans
  • Castle used these vans for surveillance and weapons transportation.
  • Route taxis are privately owned mini vans that are a cross between taxis and buses.
  • Minibuses today are both still derived from vans, or built specifically as minibuses.
British Dictionary definitions for vans

van1

/væn/
noun
1.
short for caravan (sense 1)
2.
a covered motor vehicle for transporting goods, etc, by road
3.
(Brit) a closed railway wagon in which the guard travels, for transporting goods, mail, etc
4.
(Brit) See delivery van

van2

/væn/
noun
1.
short for vanguard

van3

/væn/
noun (tennis, mainly Brit)
1.
short for advantage (sense 3) Usual US and Canadian word ad

van4

/væn/
noun
1.
any device for winnowing corn
2.
an archaic or poetic word for wing
Word Origin
C17: variant of fan1

Van

/vɑːn/
noun
1.
a city in E Turkey, on Lake Van. Pop: 377 000 (2005 est)
2.
Lake Van, a salt lake in E Turkey, at an altitude of 1650 m (5400 ft): fed by melting snow and glaciers. Area: 3737 sq km (1433 sq miles)
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 vans

van

n.

"front part of an army or other advancing group," c.1600, shortening of vanguard.

"covered truck or wagon," 1829, shortening of caravan.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for vans

van

  1. caravan
  2. vanguard

VAN

value-added network
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Word Value for vans

7
9
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