alan bean


Alan L(aVern) born 1932, U.S. astronaut.
Roy ("Judge") 1825?–1903, U.S. frontiersman and justice of the peace: called himself “the law west of the Pecos.” Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
bean (biːn)
1.  French bean lima bean scarlet runner See string bean any of various leguminous plants of the widely cultivated genus Phaseolus producing edible seeds in pods
2.  any of several other leguminous plants that bear edible pods or seeds, such as the broad bean and soya bean
3.  any of various other plants whose seeds are produced in pods or podlike fruits
4.  the seed or pod of any of these plants
5.  any of various beanlike seeds, such as coffee
6.  slang (US), (Canadian) another word for head
7.  slang not have a bean to be without money: I haven't got a bean
8.  informal full of beans
 a.  full of energy and vitality
 b.  (US) mistaken; erroneous
9.  informal spill the beans to disclose something confidential
10.  slang chiefly (US), (Canadian) (tr) to hit (a person) on the head
[Old English bēan; related to Old Norse baun, Old Frisian bāne, Old High German bōna bean]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. bean "bean, pea, legume," from P.Gmc. *bauno (cf. O.N. baun, Ger. bohne), perhaps from a PIE reduplicated base *bha-bha- and related to L. faba "bean." As a metaphor for "something of small value" it is attested from c.1300. Meaning "head" is U.S. baseball slang c.1905 (in bean-ball "a pitch thrown
at the head"); thus slang verb bean meaning "to hit on the head," attested from 1910. Slang bean-counter is first recorded 1975. The notion of lucky or magic beans in English folklore is from the exotic beans or large seeds that wash up occasionally in Cornwall and western Scotland, carried from the Caribbean or South America by the Gulf Stream. They were cherished, believed to ward off the evil eye and aid in childbirth. To not know beans (Amer.Eng. 1933) is perhaps from the "of little worth" sense, but may have a connection to colloquial expression recorded around Somerset, to know how many beans make five "be a clever fellow."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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