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

  • transitive v. To desire greatly; wish for: They want to leave. She wants a glass of water. See Synonyms at desire.
  • transitive v. To desire (someone to do something): I want you to clean your room.
  • transitive v. To request the presence or assistance of: You are wanted by your office.
  • transitive v. To seek with intent to capture: The fugitive is wanted by the police.
  • transitive v. To have an inclination toward; like: Say what you want, but be tactful.
  • transitive v. Informal To be obliged (to do something): You want to be careful on the ice.
  • transitive v. To be without; lack. See Synonyms at lack.
  • transitive v. To be in need of; require: "'Your hair wants cutting,' said the Hatter” ( Lewis Carroll).
  • intransitive v. To have need: wants for nothing.
  • intransitive v. To be destitute or needy.
  • intransitive v. To be disposed; wish: Call me daily if you want.
  • n. The condition or quality of lacking something usual or necessary: stayed home for want of anything better to do.
  • n. Pressing need; destitution: lives in want.
  • n. Something desired: a person of few wants and needs.
  • n. A defect of character; a fault.
  • want in Slang To desire greatly to enter: The dog wants in.
  • want in Slang To wish to join a project, business, or other undertaking.
  • want out Slang To desire greatly to leave: The cat wants out.
  • want out Slang To wish to leave a project, a business, or other undertaking.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A desire, wish, longing.
  • n. Lack, absence.
  • n. Poverty.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The state of not having; the condition of being without anything; absence or scarcity of what is needed or desired; deficiency; lack
  • n. Specifically, absence or lack of necessaries; destitution; poverty; penury; indigence; need.
  • n. That which is needed or desired; a thing of which the loss is felt; what is not possessed, and is necessary for use or pleasure.
  • n. A depression in coal strata, hollowed out before the subsequent deposition took place.
  • intransitive v. To be absent; to be deficient or lacking; to fail; not to be sufficient; to fall or come short; to lack; -- often used impersonally with of.
  • intransitive v. To be in a state of destitution; to be needy; to lack.
  • transitive v. To be without; to be destitute of, or deficient in; not to have; to lack
  • transitive v. To have occasion for, as useful, proper, or requisite; to require; to need.
  • transitive v. To feel need of; to wish or long for; to desire; to crave.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Lacking; deficient.
  • To be without; be destitute of; lack: as, to want knowledge or judgment; to want food, clothing, or money.
  • To be deficient in; fall short in; be lack ing in respect of, or to the amount of.
  • To do without; dispense with; spare.
  • To have occasion for, as something requi site, useful, or proper; require; need.
  • To feel a desire for; feel the need of; wish or long for; desire; crave.
  • To desire to see, speak to, or do business with; desire the presence or assistance of; de sire or require to do something: as, you are the very man we want; call me if I am wanted; the general wanted him to capture the battery.
  • To be lacking, deficient, or absent.
  • To fail; give out; fall short.
  • To be in need; suffer from lack of some thing.
  • n. Lack; deficiency; scarcity; dearth, or absence of what is needed or desired: as, want of thought; want of money.
  • n. A vacant part, place, or space; a vacancy.
  • n. That which is lacking, but needed; the vacancy caused by the absence of some need ful, important, or desirable thing.
  • n. The state of being without means; poverty; penury; indigence.
  • n. A time of need.
  • n. That which cannot be dispensed with; a necessity.
  • n. In coal-mining, same as nip, 8.
  • n. Synonyms Insufficiency, scantiness, dearth, default, failure.
  • n. Requirement, de sideratum.
  • n. Need, Indigence, etc. (see poverty), dis tress, straits.
  • n. The mole or moldwarp.
  • n. A glove.

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

  • n. a specific feeling of desire
  • v. feel or have a desire for; want strongly
  • n. anything that is necessary but lacking
  • v. wish or demand the presence of
  • n. a state of extreme poverty
  • n. the state of needing something that is absent or unavailable
  • v. be without, lack; be deficient in
  • v. hunt or look for; want for a particular reason
  • v. have need of


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

Middle English wanten, to be lacking, from Old Norse vanta.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English wanten ("to lack"), from Old Norse vanta ("to lack"), from Proto-Germanic *wanatōnan (“to be wanting, lack”), from *wanô (“lack, deficiency”), from Proto-Indo-European *(e)wAn-, *wān- (“empty”). Cognate with Middle High German wan ("not full, empty"), Middle Dutch wan ("empty, poor"), Old English wana ("want, lack, absence, deficiency"), Latin vanus ("empty"). See wan.



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  • A mole.

    Thus, wanti-tump or onti-tump, a molehill. - old provincial term from Gloucestershire.

    May 2, 2011