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[weyn] /weɪn/
(initial capital letter) Astronomy. Charles's Wain.
a farm wagon or cart.
Origin of wain
before 900; Middle English; Old English wægn, wǣn, cognate with Dutch wagen, German Wagen. See weigh1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for wain
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It occupied eleven working days of Mr. wain's time, but it caught the public fancy and made a tremendous hit all over the world.

    Concerning Cats Helen M. Winslow
  • Lorand pointed speechlessly to the wain, and could not tell them.

    Debts of Honor Maurus Jkai
  • "Mmm—yes," growled one of the lower-fallen listeners, a furry-shouldered, buck-toothed clod named wain.

    The Devil's Asteroid Manly Wade Wellman
  • Swiftly her attendants prepared the wain and harnessed the mules.

  • I have Charles's-wain below in a butt of sack: 'twill glister like your crab-fish.

  • Could I have had my way, I would have loaded a wain with them.

    Hawthorne and His Circle Julian Hawthorne
  • He doubted whether wain would have the common sense to do this.

    Mike P. G. Wodehouse
  • Probably wain will want to see you, and tell you all about things, which is your dorm.

    Mike P. G. Wodehouse
  • They darted and wounded one another with oysters that would fill a wain, and sponges as big as an acre.

    Lucian's True History Lucian of Samosata
British Dictionary definitions for wain


(mainly poetic) a farm wagon or cart
Word Origin
Old English wægn; related to Old Frisian wein, Old Norse vagn


John (Barrington). 1925–94, British novelist, poet, and critic. His novels include Hurry on Down (1953), Strike the Father Dead (1962), and Young Shoulders (1982)
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 wain

Old English wægn "wheeled vehicle," from Proto-Germanic *wagnaz (see wagon). Largely fallen from use by c.1600, but kept alive by poets, who found it easier to rhyme on than wagon. As a name for the Big Dipper/Plough, it is from Old English (see Charles's Wain).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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