- of an unnatural or sickly pallor; pallid; lacking color: His wan face suddenly flushed.
- showing or suggesting ill health, fatigue, unhappiness, etc.: a wan look; a wan smile.
- lacking in forcefulness, competence, or effectiveness: their wan attempts to organize the alumni.
- dark or gloomy.
- pale in color or hue.
- to become or make wan.
Origin of wan1
SynonymsSee more synonyms for wan on Thesaurus.com
- a simple past tense of win1.
Examples from the Web for wan
“Expat bankers are definitely into the drugs/hooker scene, and Wan Chai is the very epicenter,” he told The Daily Beast.Hong Kong’s High-Flying British Psycho Killer Suspect
Nico Hines, Tom Sykes
November 3, 2014
Laughing at one's own participants is a fine strategy for a show like "I Wanna Marry Harry."The Real Housewives of Miss America
September 21, 2014
“I wanna go inside every corner / Girl, you really turn me on / I wanna go knock, knock our bodies to the beat”?Not a Liquid Dream: O-Town's Back, Baby. But Where’s Ashley?
August 25, 2014
If you wanna help, tell the CIA to stop trying to kill me.U.S. Prisons Becoming De Facto Home of the Mentally Ill
April 10, 2014
My publicist called me up and was like, ‘Would you wanna to do this?’And The Escort of The Year Is… Backstage at The Sex Oscars
March 24, 2014
"Miss Porter'll tell ye about this wan," said Mike, diplomatically.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
"I wish you had brought in the tent, too," said the general with a wan smile.In the Midst of Alarms
There was a puzzled expression upon his wan, blood-streaked face.The Monster Men
Edgar Rice Burroughs
He lifted a face so wan, so altered, that the doctor started.Hetty's Strange History
The stars were wan, and the full moon shone over the fields.The Gentleman From Indiana
- unnaturally pale esp from sickness, grief, etc
- characteristic or suggestive of ill health, unhappiness, etc
- (of light, stars, etc) faint or dim
- to make or become wan
- wide area network
- Nigeria (international car registration)
Word Origin and History for wan
Old English wann "dark, lacking luster," later "leaden, pale, gray," of uncertain origin, and not found in other Germanic languages. The connecting notion is colorlessness. Perhaps related to wane.
- Short for wide area network.A communications network that uses such devices as telephone lines, satellite dishes, or radio waves to span a larger geographic area than can be covered by a LAN. The Internet is a WAN.