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[ween] /win/
verb (used with object), verb (used without object), Archaic.
to think; suppose.
to expect, hope, or intend.
Origin of ween
before 900; Middle English wenen, Old English wēnan to expect; cognate with German wähnen to imagine, Old Norse væna, Gothic wēnjan to hope, expect
Related forms
unweened, adjective
Can be confused
wean, ween. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for ween
  • It can begin to ween people from the dependency of the foreign aid system.
  • Since their enactment, the property tax shifts have been an unending source of friction bet ween state and local government.
  • First, a court must decide whether there is an actual or real conflict bet ween the potentially applicable laws.
  • Her life is a comfortable balance bet ween teaching and creating art.
British Dictionary definitions for ween


(archaic) to think or imagine (something)
Word Origin
Old English wēnan; related to Old Saxon wānian, Gothic wēnjan, German wähnen to assume wrongly
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 ween

Old English wenan "to think," from Proto-Germanic *woenijanan (cf. Old Saxon wanian, Old Norse væna, Old Frisian wena, Old High German wanen, German wähnen, Gothic wenjan "to expect, suppose, think"), from *woeniz "expectation," from PIE root *wen- "to wish, desire, strive for" (see Venus). Archaic since 17c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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