verb (used without object), leaned or (especially British) leant; lean·ing.
verb (used with object), leaned or (especially British) leant; lean·ing.
- to shift one's body weight forward or toward someone or something: He stood near home plate and leaned in for the pitch.
- to embrace risk, be assertive, etc., as to achieve the greatest level of success in the workplace: She really knows how to lean in—she'll have a corner office before long.
- to exert influence or pressure on in order to gain cooperation, maintain discipline, or the like: The state is leaning on the company to clean up its industrial wastes.
- to criticize, reprimand, or punish: I would have enjoyed school more if the teachers hadn't leaned on me so much.
Origin of lean1
adjective, lean·er, lean·est.
Origin of lean2
Synonyms for lean
Antonyms for lean
Related Words for leansinewy, gangly, lanky, slim, slender, gaunt, rangy, sparse, skinny, svelte, angular, wiry, incline, veer, drift, nod, tilt, recline, tip, slant
Examples from the Web for lean
Contemporary Examples of lean
In 2012, as a 10th grader, Lean says he recorded his first legitimate song, “Hurt.”
The trio formed the Sad Boys collective, with Sherm and Gud on production and Lean manning the mic.
“We broke off shortly after because we were more ambitious,” says Lean.
Our squadron doctor was lean, well muscled, square jawed and blond.I Shot Bin Laden
November 16, 2014
Fully 88 percent of us either identify outright or lean to a party, 47 percent Democrat and 41 percent Republican.Reality Check: There Are No Swing Voters
November 13, 2014
Historical Examples of lean
He thought, too, of the lean face and the peculiar, set eye of Dozier.Way of the Lawless
And now it comes back to me about the other one, the lean Andrew, his brother.Rico and Wiseli
And he chuckled and rubbed his lean hands together as I had so often seen him do.The Bacillus of Beauty
The tall son of Hanover was lean of flesh, but gross in muscle.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
I am lean and bony and I've got a beak where I should have a nose.Her Father's Daughter
verb leans, leaning, leaned or leant
Word Origin for lean
Word Origin for lean
c.1200, from Old English hleonian "to bend, recline, lie down, rest," from Proto-Germanic *khlinen (cf. Old Saxon hlinon, Old Frisian lena, Middle Dutch lenen, Dutch leunen, Old High German hlinen, German lehnen "to lean"), from PIE root *klei- "to lean, to incline" (cf. Sanskrit srayati "leans," sritah "leaning;" Old Persian cay "to lean;" Lithuanian slyti "to slope," slieti "to lean;" Latin clinare "to lean, bend," clivus "declivity," inclinare "cause to bend," declinare "bend down, turn aside;" Greek klinein "to cause to slope, slant, incline;" Old Irish cloin "crooked, wrong;" Middle Irish cle, Welsh cledd "left," literally "slanting;" Welsh go-gledd "north," literally "left" -- for similar sense evolution, see Yemen, Benjamin, southpaw).
Meaning "to incline the body against something for support" is mid-13c. Figurative sense of "to trust for support" is from early 13c. Sense of "to lean toward mentally, to favor" is from late 14c. Related: Leaned; leaning. Colloquial lean on "put pressure on" (someone) is first recorded 1960.
"thin, spare, with little flesh or fat," c.1200, from Old English hlæne "lean, thin," possibly from hlænan "cause to lean or bend," from Proto-Germanic *khlainijan, which would connect it to Old English hleonian (see lean (v.)). But perhaps rather, according to OED, from a PIE *qloinio- (cf. Lithuanian klynas "scrap, fragment," Lettish kleins "feeble"). Extended and figurative senses from early 14c. The noun meaning "lean animals or persons" is from c.1200, from the adjective.
"action or state of leaning," 1776, from lean (v.).