American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To move about without a definite destination or purpose.
- v. To go by an indirect route or at no set pace; amble: wander toward town.
- v. To proceed in an irregular course; meander.
- v. To go astray: wander from the path of righteousness.
- v. To lose clarity or coherence of thought or expression.
- v. To wander across or through: wander the forests and fields.
- n. The act or an instance of wandering; a stroll.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- In physical chemistry, to move hither and thither in every direction: said of the molecules of a liquid or of the molecules of two miscible liquids in contact with each other.
- To ramble with out, or as if without, any certain course or object in view; travel or move from place to place; range about; roam; rove; stroll; stray.
- To leave home or a settled place of abode; depart; migrate.
- To depart from any settled course; go astray, as from the paths of duty; stray; de viate; err.
- To lose one's way; be lost.
- To think or speak incoherently; rave; be de lirious.
- Synonyms 1-3. Roam, Rove, etc. (see ramble), straggle.
- Swerve, digress.
- To travel over without a cer tain course; stroll through; traverse.
- To lead astray; cause to lose the way or become lost.
- v. intransitive To move without purpose; often in search of livelihood.
- v. intransitive To stray; stray from one's course; err.
- v. intransitive To commit adultery.
- v. intransitive To go somewhere indirectly or at varying speeds; to move in a curved path.
- v. intransitive Of the mind, to lose focus or clarity of argument or attention.
- n. The act or instance of wandering.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To ramble here and there without any certain course or with no definite object in view; to range about; to stroll; to rove.
- v. To go away; to depart; to stray off; to deviate; to go astray.
- v. To be delirious; not to be under the guidance of reason; to rave.
- v. rare To travel over without a certain course; to traverse; to stroll through.
- v. to move or cause to move in a sinuous, spiral, or circular course
- v. move about aimlessly or without any destination, often in search of food or employment
- v. lose clarity or turn aside especially from the main subject of attention or course of argument in writing, thinking, or speaking
- v. be sexually unfaithful to one's partner in marriage
- v. go via an indirect route or at no set pace
- From Middle English wandren, wandrien, from Old English wandrian ("to wander, roam, fly around, hover; change; stray, err"), from Proto-Germanic *wandrōnan (“to wander”), from Proto-Indo-European *wendʰ- (“to turn, wind”), equivalent to wend + -er (frequentative suffix). Cognate with Scots wander ("to wander"), German wandern ("to wander, roam, migrate"), Swedish vandra ("to wander, hike"). (Wiktionary)
- Middle English wanderen, from Old English wandrian. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The goal is to win converts, that is people who will wander from the literary fiction aisle of B&N to the Fantasy & Sci-Fi section.”
“Letting my mind wander is usually when I have the best ideas.”
“Not even a coach likely destined for the Hall of Fame, Bill Parcells, could help the Cowboys wander from the playoff desert in four seasons as head coach, losing twice.”
“And then there's always that old Communion hymn with the line, "We pray for those who wander from the fold/O bring them back, Good Shepherd of the sheep/Back to the Faith which saints believed of old,/Back to the Church, which still that Faith doth keep.”
“I feared to wander from the sight of my fellow-creatures, lest when alone he should come to claim his companion.”
“He let his gaze wander from the ordered stacks of papers on his desk to the expanse of woodland visible through the loft window.”
“Are we to wander is some strange wilderness, aimlessly without direction.”
“But the only place my eyes can wander is to the nylon displays a few yards away.”
“It is particularly disconcerting for me today, because I know so many of the people in the room, and that arouses the most unspeakerly temptation to let my mind wander from the text, trying to decide which half of the audience is which.”
“It was as if an unwritten law of American journalism had evolved, stating that the greater the institutional platform, and the more power it has to influence public opinion, the more carefully it must be used and the less it must wander from the accepted norms of American society.”
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