English dictionary

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English adjective: lean

1. lean lacking excess flesh

SamplesYou can't be too rich or too thin.
Yon Cassius has a lean and hungry look.


Similaranorectic, anorexic, boney, bony, cadaverous, deep-eyed, emaciated, gangling, gangly, gaunt, haggard, hollow-eyed, lank, lanky, pinched, rawboned, reedlike, reedy, scarecrowish, scraggy, scrawny, shriveled, shrivelled, shrunken, skeletal, skinny, slender, slender-waisted, slight, slim, slim-waisted, spare, spindle-legged, spindle-shanked, spindly, stringy, sunken-eyed, svelte, trim, twiggy, twiglike, underweight, wasp-waisted, wasted, weedy, wiry, wisplike, wispy, withered, wizen, wizened

See alsoectomorphic, thin

Attributebody weight


2. lean lacking in mineral content or combustible material

SamplesLean ore.
Lean fuel.


3. lean containing little excess

SamplesA lean budget.
A skimpy allowance.


Similardeficient, insufficient


4. lean not profitable or prosperous

SamplesA lean year.



English noun: lean

1. lean (attribute) the property possessed by a line or surface that departs from the vertical

SamplesThe tower had a pronounced tilt.
The ship developed a list to starboard.
He walked with a heavy inclination to the right.

Synonymsinclination, leaning, list, tilt

Broader (hypernym)position, spatial relation

English verb: lean

1. lean (motion) to incline or bend from a vertical position

SamplesShe leaned over the banister.

Synonymsangle, slant, tilt, tip

Pattern of useSomething ----s.
Something is ----ing PP.
Somebody ----s PP

Broader (hypernym)bend, flex

Narrower (hyponym)heel, incline, lean back, list, pitch, recline, slope, weather

2. lean (contact) cause to lean or incline

SamplesHe leaned his rifle against the wall.

ExamplesThey lean their rifles on the cabinet

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something PP

Broader (hypernym)lay, place, pose, position, put, set

3. lean (stative) have a tendency or disposition to do or be something; be inclined

SamplesShe tends to be nervous before her lectures.
These dresses run small.
He inclined to corpulence.

Synonymsbe given, incline, run, tend

Pattern of useSomebody ----s to INFINITIVE

Broader (hypernym)be

Narrower (hyponym)gravitate, suffer, take kindly to

4. lean (cognition) rely on for support

SamplesWe can lean on this man.

Pattern of useSomebody ----s somebody.
Something ----s somebody

Broader (hypernym)bank, rely, swear, trust

5. lean (motion) cause to lean to the side

SamplesErosion listed the old tree.


Pattern of useSomething ----s something

Broader (hypernym)move

Verb groupheel, list

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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