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tr.v. weaned, wean·ing, weans
1. To accustom (the young of a mammal) to take nourishment other than by suckling.
2. To detach from that to which one is strongly habituated or devoted: She weaned herself from cigarettes.
3. To accustom to something from an early age. Often used with on: "The northerners among the refugees ... were weaned on harsh weather and infertile soils and are known for their rigorous work ethic" (Lowell Weiss).

[Middle English wenen, from Old English wenian; see wen- in Indo-European roots.]
Usage Note: In recent years weaned on has come to be widely used in the sense "raised on," as in Moviegoers weaned on the Star Trek TV series will doubtless find the film to their liking. A few critics have objected to this usage on the grounds that wean refers literally to a detachment from a source of nourishment. But the process of weaning involves a substitution of some other form of nourishment for mother's milk; thus it is sometimes said that a child is weaned onto or on sugar water. Hence a sentence like Paul was weaned on folk music may suggest metaphorically that Paul's exposure to folk music began from the time he stopped nursing, that is, from a very early age.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.weaned - freed of dependence on something especially (for mammals) mother's milk; "the just-weaned calf bawled for its mother"
mammal, mammalian - any warm-blooded vertebrate having the skin more or less covered with hair; young are born alive except for the small subclass of monotremes and nourished with milk
unweaned - not weaned; "some children remain unweaned until their second or third birthdays"