O.E. eanian "to bring forth" (young), especially in ref. to sheep or goats, from P.Gmc. *agwnojanan (cf. Du. oonen), perhaps from PIE *agwhnos "lamb" (cf. Gk. amnos "lamb," L. agnus, O.C.S. agne, O.Ir. van, Welsh oen). Yeanling "young lamb, kid" is recorded from 1637.