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From Middle English lōrn, lōren, ilōrn, ilōren (past participle of lese, lẹ̄sen (to lose, be deprived of; to damn, doom to perdition)),[1] 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.
    • 1579, Immeritô [pseudonym; Edmund Spenser], “Ianuarie. Aegloga Prima.”, in The Shepheardes Calender: Conteyning Tvvelue Æglogues Proportionable to the Twelue Monethes. Entitled to the Noble and Vertuous Gentleman Most Worthy of All Titles both of Learning and Cheualrie M. Philip Sidney, London: Printed by Hugh Singleton, dwelling in Creede Lane neere vnto Ludgate at the signe of the gylden Tunne, and are there to be solde, OCLC 606515406; republished as The Shepheardes Calender, Conteining Twelue Æglogues Proportionable to the Twelue Monethes. Entitled to the Noble and Vertuous Gentleman Most Worthie of All Titles, both of Learning and Chiualry, Maister Philip Sidney, imprinted at London: By Iohn Wolfe for Iohn Harrison the yonger, dwelling in Pater noster Roe, at the signe of the anker, 1586, OCLC 837880809, folio 2, recto:
      I loue thilke laſſe, (alas why do I loue:) / And am forlorne, (alas why am I lorne:) / Shee deignes not my good will, but doth reproue, / And of my rurall muſick holdeth ſcorne.
    • 1857, Gerald Griffin, “Addressed to a Friend”, in The Poetical and Dramatic Works of Gerald Griffin, Duffy: James Duffy 7 Wellington Quay, OCLC 6693816, stanza VII, page 159:
      Yet, trust me, Memory's warmest sighs / Are often breathed in moments lorn— / And many a feeling thought will rise / And in the bosom die unborn.
    • 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.

Derived terms[edit]



  1. ^ lẹ̄sen, v.(4)” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 5 March 2018.