- The definition of wanton is a reckless, malicious, indecent or sexually unrestrained person.
- An example of wanton is someone who knows they are very drunk and drives home anyway.
- An example of wanton is someone who spreads horrible lies about another.
- An example of wanton is an HIV positive person having unprotected sex with many different people.
wanton definition by Webster's New World
- Obsolete undisciplined; unmanageable: a wanton child
- sexually loose or unrestrained: a wanton woman
- Old Poet. frisky; playful; frolicsome
- Old Poet. capricious; unrestrained: wanton winds
- senseless, unprovoked, unjustifiable, or deliberately malicious: wanton cruelty, a wanton insult
- recklessly or arrogantly ignoring justice, decency, morality, etc.: wanton disregard of human rights
- Now Rare luxuriant: said of vegetation, etc.
- lavish, luxurious, or extravagant: said of speech, dress, etc.
Origin: Middle English wantowen, variant, variety of wantogen, wanton, irregular ; from Old English wan-, used as negative prefix ; from wan, lacking, deficient (see wane) plush togen, past participle of teon, to draw, educate, bring up (see tow)
wanton definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- Immoral or unchaste; lewd.
- a. Gratuitously cruel; merciless.b. Marked by unprovoked, gratuitous maliciousness; capricious and unjust: wanton destruction.
- Unrestrainedly excessive: wanton extravagance; wanton depletion of oil reserves.
- Luxuriant; overabundant: wanton tresses.
- Frolicsome; playful.
- Undisciplined; spoiled.
- Obsolete Rebellious; refractory.
- One who is immoral, lewd, or licentious.
- One that is playful or frolicsome.
- One that is undisciplined or spoiled.
Origin: Middle English wantowen : wan-, not, lacking (from Old English; see euə- in Indo-European roots) + towen, past participle of teen, to bring up (from Old English tēon, to lead, draw; see deuk- in Indo-European roots).
- wanˈton·ly adverb
- wanˈton·ness noun
wanton - Legal Definition