• (countable) A desire, wish, longing.
  • Something needed or desired; a thing of which the loss is felt.
  • (uncountable) Poverty.
  • (countable, often followed by of) Lack, absence.
  • (Britain, mining) A depression in coal strata, hollowed out before the subsequent deposition took place.


  • (transitive) To lack, not to have (something). [from 13th c.]
  • (intransitive, now dated) To be lacking, not to exist. [from 13th c.]

    "There was something wanting in the play."

  • (intransitive, dated) To be in a state of destitution; to be needy; to lack.
  • (transitive) To wish for or to desire (something). [from 18th c.]

    "What do you want to eat?  I want you to leave.  I"

  • (transitive, colloquially with verbal noun as object) To be in need of; to require (something). [from 15th c.]

    "That chair wants fixing."

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