see also: Wander
  • (America) IPA: /ˈwɑndɚ/
  • (RP) IPA: /ˈwɒndə/

wander (wanders, present participle wandering; past and past participle wandered)

  1. (intransitive) To move without purpose or specified destination; often in search of livelihood.
    to wander over the fields
    • Bible, Epistle to the Hebrews xi.37:
      They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins.
    • 1907, Robert William Chambers, chapter IX, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 24962326 ↗:
      “A tight little craft,” was Austin’s invariable comment on the matron; […]. ¶ Near her wandered her husband, orientally bland, invariably affable, and from time to time squinting sideways, as usual, in the ever-renewed expectation that he might catch a glimpse of his stiff, retroussé moustache.
    • 1915, G[eorge] A. Birmingham [pseudonym; James Owen Hannay], chapter I, in Gossamer, New York, N.Y.: George H. Doran Company, OCLC 5661828 ↗:
      There is an hour or two, after the passengers have embarked, which is disquieting and fussy. […] Stewards, carrying cabin trunks, swarm in the corridors. Passengers wander restlessly about or hurry, with futile energy, from place to place.
    Synonyms: err, roam
  2. (intransitive) To stray; stray from one's course; err.
    A writer wanders from his subject.
    • Bible, Psalms cxix.10:
      O, let me not wander from thy commandments.
  3. (intransitive) To commit adultery.
    Synonyms: cheat
  4. (intransitive) To go somewhere indirectly or at varying speeds; to move in a curved path.
  5. (intransitive) Of the mind, to lose focus or clarity of argument or attention.
    Synonyms: drift