The state of being held as security for a loan, or as a pledge.
All our jewellery was in pawn by this stage.
My life I never held but as a pawn / To wage against thy enemies.
An instance of pawning something.
Redeem from broking pawn the blemish'd crown.
As the morning dew is a pawn of the evening fatness, so, O Lord, let this day's comfort be the earnest of to-morrow's.
(now rare) An item given as security on a loan, or as a pledge.
1621, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy, Oxford: Printed by Iohn Lichfield and Iames Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC216894069; The Anatomy of Melancholy:[…], 2nd corrected and augmented edition, Oxford: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, 1624, OCLC54573970, (please specify |partition=1, 2, or 3):
, New York, 2001, p.106:
Brokers, takers of pawns, biting userers, I will not admit; yet […] I will tolerate some kind of usery.
As for mortgaging or pawning,[…]men will not take pawns without use [i.e. interest].