1

lean

verb \ ˈlēn \

Definition of lean

leaned play \ˈlēnd, chiefly British ˈlent\; leaning play \ˈlē-niŋ\
intransitive verb
1 a : to incline, deviate, or bend from a vertical position
  • He leaned back in his chair.
b : to cast one's weight to one side for support
  • lean on me as we walk.
2 : to rely for support or inspiration
  • preferred not to lean on his father in building a career
  • Current Biography
3 : to incline in opinion, taste, or desire
  • leaning toward a career in chemistry
transitive verb
: to cause to lean : incline
  • The boy leaned his head on his mother's shoulder.
lean on
: to apply pressure to
  • They were leaning on the governor to pass the law.

Origin and Etymology of lean

Middle English lenen, from Old English hleonian; akin to Old High German hlinēn to lean, Greek klinein, Latin clinare


2

lean

noun

Definition of lean

: the act or an instance of leaning : inclination

Origin and Etymology of lean

see 1lean


3

lean

adjective

Definition of lean

1 a : lacking or deficient in flesh
b : containing little or no fat
  • lean meat
2 : lacking richness, sufficiency, or productiveness
  • lean profits
  • the lean years
3 : deficient in an essential or important quality or ingredient: such as
a of ore : containing little valuable mineral
b : low in combustible component used especially of fuel mixtures
4 : characterized by economy (as of style, expression, or operation)

leanly

adverb

leanness

play \ˈlēn-nəs\ noun

Examples of lean in a Sentence

  1. She has a lean, athletic body.

  2. all of the marathoners are extremely lean

Origin and Etymology of lean

Middle English lene, from Old English hlǣne

Synonym Discussion of lean

lean, spare, lank, lanky, gaunt, rawboned, scrawny, skinny mean thin because of an absence of excess flesh. lean stresses lack of fat and of curving contours.
    • a lean racehorse
spare suggests leanness from abstemious living or constant exercise.
    • the gymnast's spare figure
lank implies tallness as well as leanness.
    • the lank legs of the heron
lanky suggests awkwardness and loose-jointedness as well as thinness.
    • a lanky youth, all arms and legs
gaunt implies marked thinness or emaciation as from overwork or suffering.
    • a prisoner's gaunt face
rawboned suggests a large ungainly build without implying undernourishment.
    • a rawboned farmer
scrawny and skinny imply an extreme leanness that suggests deficient strength and vitality.
    • a scrawny chicken
    • skinny street urchins

4

lean

verb

Definition of lean

transitive verb
: to make lean

First Known Use of lean

before 12th century


5

lean

noun

Definition of lean

: the part of meat that consists principally of lean muscle

First Known Use of lean

15th century


Lean

biographical name \ ˈlēn \

Definition of Lean

Sir David 1908–1991 British film director


LEAN Defined for English Language Learners

lean

adjective

Definition of lean for English Language Learners

  • : not having much fat on the body : physically thin, strong, and healthy

  • : containing little or no fat

  • : not having or producing much money, food, etc.


LEAN Defined for Kids

1

lean

verb \ ˈlēn \

Definition of lean for Students

leaned; leaning
1 : to bend or tilt from an upright position
  • Lean the ladder against the wall.
  • I leaned forward.
2 : to bend and rest on
  • You can lean on me.
3 : depend 1 She leans on her friends for help.
4 : to tend or move toward in opinion, taste, or desire
  • She leans towards city life.

2

lean

adjective

Definition of lean for Students

leaner; leanest
1 : having too little flesh : skinny
  • lean cattle
2 : having little body fat
  • a lean athlete
3 : containing very little fat
  • lean meat
4 : not large or plentiful
  • a lean harvest

leanness

noun

Synonym Discussion of lean

lean, thin, skinny mean not having a great amount of flesh. lean is used of a lack of unnecessary flesh and may also be used for the tough, muscular frame of an athlete.
    • He has the lean body of a runner.
thin can describe a person having not much flesh or fat and often having an amount less than is desirable for good health.
    • She's a thin and sickly child.
skinny suggests a bony, noticeably thin appearance that may indicate poor nourishment.
    • We found a skinny stray cat.


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