A woman regarded as being disreputable, especially a prostitute.
(scots) A young woman.
(scot.) A girl or unmarried woman.
Origin of quean
- Middle English quene from Old English cwene woman gwen- in Indo-European roots
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English quene (“young, robust woman"), from Old English cwene (“woman, female serf"), from Proto-Germanic *kwenÇ (“woman"), from Proto-Indo-European *gÊ·á¸—n (“woman"). Cognate with Dutch kween (“a barren woman, a barren cow"), Low German quene (“barren cow, heifer"), German dialectal Kan, Chan (“woman, wife"), Swedish kvinna (“woman"), Icelandic kona (“woman"), Gothic ðŒµðŒ¹ðŒ½ð‰ (qino, “female, woman"), ðŒµðŒ´ðŒ½ðƒ (qens, “wife"). More at queen.