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From Middle English lorn, loren, ilorn, iloren, from Old English loren, ġeloren, from Proto-Germanic *galuzanaz, *luzanaz, past participle of Proto-Germanic *leusaną (to lose), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *lewH- (to cut, sever; to separate; to loosen; to lose). See further at lese.



lorn (comparative more lorn, superlative most lorn)

  1. (obsolete) Doomed; lost.
  2. (archaic) Abandoned, forlorn, lonely.
    • 1874, James Thomson, “The City of Dreadful Night. 1870; 1874.”, in The City of Dreadful Night and Other Poems, London: Reeves and Turner, 196 Strand, published 1880, stanza XIX, page 47:
      The mighty river flowing dark and deep, / With ebb and flood from the remote sea-tides / Vague-sounding through the City's sleepless sleep, / Is named the River of the Suicides; / For night by night some lorn wretch overweary, / And shuddering from the future yet more dreary, / Within its cold secure oblivion hides.
    • 1963, Thomas Pynchon, “In which Benny Profane, a Schlemihl and Human Yo-yo, Gets to an Apocheir”, in V.: A Novel, New York, N.Y.: J. B. Lippincott & Co., OCLC 602193192; republished New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books, 1964, OCLC 924727755, page 19:
      He never found his beloved machine gun. Lorn and drained-nervous, he was fired next day.

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