[ langk ]
See synonyms for lank on
adjective,lank·er, lank·est.
  1. (of plants) unduly long and slender: lank grass; lank, leafless trees.

  2. (of hair) straight and limp; without spring or curl.

  1. lean; gaunt; thin.

Origin of lank

before 1000; Middle English lanc,Old English hlanc; akin to Old High German hlanca loin, side. Cf. flank

Other words from lank

  • lankly, adverb
  • lankness, noun

Words Nearby lank Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use lank in a sentence

  • The soubrette had a lank young body neatly attired in a store suit and shirt-waist.

    Ancestors | Gertrude Atherton
  • His hair and brows and lashes were paler than straw, and his long lank figure was without either distinction or muscularity.

    Ancestors | Gertrude Atherton
  • The master manhunter wheeled, saw the lank figure of Jeff Weedham standing in the door.

  • The door of the rotunda swings open, admitting the tall, lank figure of the Deputy Warden.

    Prison Memoirs of an Anarchist | Alexander Berkman
  • He had the Yankee body, lank and ribbed, and was so tall that his head seemed always looking over a transom.

    The Woman Gives | Owen Johnson

British Dictionary definitions for lank (1 of 2)


/ (læŋk) /

  1. long and limp

  2. thin or gaunt

Origin of lank

Old English hlanc loose

Derived forms of lank

  • lankly, adverb
  • lankness, noun

British Dictionary definitions for lank (2 of 2)


/ (læŋk) /

adjective, adverb
  1. Southern African informal a lot; a great deal

Origin of lank

perhaps from Afrikaans lank long

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