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[weyn] /weɪn/
(initial capital letter) Astronomy. Charles's Wain.
a farm wagon or cart.
Origin of wain
before 900; Middle English; Old English wægn, wǣn, cognate with Dutch wagen, German Wagen. See weigh1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for wain
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Then he hoisted the tree on to the wain, roped it into place, and told the cartman to drive on.

    Welsh Fairy Tales William Elliott Griffis
  • Then, all at once, a wain had stood at the gate: the servants hastened to open it.

    Debts of Honor Maurus Jkai
  • And after the wain, on foot, the two brothers, hand in hand.

    Debts of Honor Maurus Jkai
  • Lorand pointed speechlessly to the wain, and could not tell them.

    Debts of Honor Maurus Jkai
  • With the Wenman, who drove the wain, we may mention the Leader or Loader.

    The Romance of Names

    Ernest Weekley
  • An earlier Godolphin had been one of the "four wheels of Charles's wain."

    The Cornwall Coast Arthur L. Salmon
  • Thus in Charles' wain some of the stars are approaching, others receding.

    The Beauties of Nature Sir John Lubbock
  • And may I take out my little ummabella (umbrella), case it might wain?

    A World of Girls L. T. Meade
  • But—breakfast at 6:30, and Charles's wain over the new chimney, or its equivalent!

    It Never Can Happen Again

    William De Morgan
British Dictionary definitions for wain


(mainly poetic) a farm wagon or cart
Word Origin
Old English wægn; related to Old Frisian wein, Old Norse vagn


John (Barrington). 1925–94, British novelist, poet, and critic. His novels include Hurry on Down (1953), Strike the Father Dead (1962), and Young Shoulders (1982)
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 wain

Old English wægn "wheeled vehicle," from Proto-Germanic *wagnaz (see wagon). Largely fallen from use by c.1600, but kept alive by poets, who found it easier to rhyme on than wagon. As a name for the Big Dipper/Plough, it is from Old English (see Charles's Wain).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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