Win"new\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Winnowed; p. pr. & vb. n. Winnowing.] [OE. windewen, winewen, AS. windwian; akin to Goth. winpjan (in comp.), winpi-skauro a fan, L. ventilare to fan, to winnow; cf. L. wannus a fan for winnowing, G. wanne, OHG. wanna. ????. See Wind moving air, and cf. Fan., n., Ventilate.]

1. To separate, and drive off, the chaff from by means of wind; to fan; as, to winnow grain.

Ho winnoweth barley to-night in the threshing floor. --Ruth. iii. 2.

2. To sift, as for the purpose of separating falsehood from truth; to separate, as had from good.

Winnow well this thought, and you shall find This light as chaff that flies before the wind. --Dryden.

3. To beat with wings, or as with wings.[Poetic]

Now on the polar winds; then with quick fan Winnows the buxom air. --Milton.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.
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