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wench

[wench] /wɛntʃ/
noun
1.
a country lass or working girl:
The milkmaid was a healthy wench.
2.
Usually Facetious. a girl or young woman.
3.
Archaic. a strumpet.
verb (used without object)
4.
to associate, especially habitually, with promiscuous women.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English, back formation from wenchel, Old English wencel child, akin to wancol tottering, said of a child learning to walk; akin to German wankeln to totter
Related forms
wencher, noun
Can be confused
wench, winch.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for wench
  • Try to stop me, you young wench.
  • Turned out she was a serving wench at a Renaissance festival.
  • She's still a cold, heartless wench.
  • Temperance was a delicate wench.
  • Communications between drill operator and wench operator.
  • If it is too heavy you may need to involve lifting equipment, such as a hoist and wench.
  • We used a wench on the swamp buggy to lift hogs onto the back to transport.
  • Pushed the button on the electric wench and it would not work.
British Dictionary definitions for wench

wench

/wɛntʃ/
noun
1.
a girl or young woman, esp a buxom or lively one: now used facetiously
2.
(archaic) a female servant
3.
(archaic) a prostitute
verb (intransitive)
4.
(archaic) to frequent the company of prostitutes
Derived Forms
wencher, noun
Word Origin
Old English wencel child, from wancol weak; related to Old High German wanchal, wankōn
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 wench
wench
late 13c., wenche "girl or young woman," shortened from wenchel "child" (12c.), from O.E. wencel, probably related to wancol "unsteady, fickle, weak," and cognate with O.N. vakr "child, weak person," O.H.G. wanchal "fickle." The word degenerated through being used in ref. to servant girls, and by mid-14c. was being used in a sense of "woman of loose morals, mistress." The verb meaning "to associate with common women" is from 1590s.
"The wenche is nat dead, but slepith." [Wyclif, Matt. ix.24, c.1380]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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