Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To move about without a definite destination or purpose.
  • intransitive verb To go by an indirect route or at no set pace; amble.
  • intransitive verb To proceed in an irregular course; meander.
  • intransitive verb To behave in a manner that does not conform to morality or norms.
  • intransitive verb To turn the attention from one subject to another with little clarity or coherence of thought.
  • intransitive verb To be directed without an object or in various directions.
  • intransitive verb To wander across or through.
  • intransitive verb To be directed around or over.
  • noun The act or an instance of wandering.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • 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.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb rare To travel over without a certain course; to traverse; to stroll through.
  • intransitive verb To ramble here and there without any certain course or with no definite object in view; to range about; to stroll; to rove.
  • intransitive verb To go away; to depart; to stray off; to deviate; to go astray.
  • intransitive verb To be delirious; not to be under the guidance of reason; to rave.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive To move without purpose; often in search of livelihood.
  • verb intransitive To stray; stray from one's course; err.
  • verb intransitive To commit adultery.
  • verb intransitive To go somewhere indirectly or at varying speeds; to move in a curved path.
  • verb intransitive Of the mind, to lose focus or clarity of argument or attention.
  • noun The act or instance of wandering.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb to move or cause to move in a sinuous, spiral, or circular course
  • verb move about aimlessly or without any destination, often in search of food or employment
  • verb lose clarity or turn aside especially from the main subject of attention or course of argument in writing, thinking, or speaking
  • verb be sexually unfaithful to one's partner in marriage
  • verb go via an indirect route or at no set pace

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English wanderen, from Old English wandrian.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

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").

Examples

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • This will be the name of my first child.

    March 25, 2008

  • "To move among one's resources, being receptive to alternative sources and new search ideas triggered by the materials that come into view. In our field … one may hypothesis that to WANDER promotes serendipity and enables useful sources that would not otherwise be discovered."

    -Bates, 1979a

    March 25, 2008

  • maybe all that futzing will pay off!

    March 25, 2008

  • Have you seen that movie, A Fish Called Wander?

    March 25, 2008

  • I wonder as I wander out into the mall

    What I shall buy Jenny and Brian and all

    Something unique, yes, but something that's small

    I wonder as I wander out into the mall

    I really should've done this a full month ago

    It's so hard to shop when we're moving so slow

    And where's the inspiration I just do not know

    I really should've done this a full month ago

    A Shopping Carol, with apologies to John Jacob Niles

    December 21, 2008

  • Heehee!

    December 22, 2008

  • "...Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it

    Prone to leave the God I love..."

    January 10, 2018