[syn: vane, web]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Vane \Vane\ (v[=a]n), n. [OE. & Prov. E. fane weathercock,
banner, AS. fana a banner, flag; akin to D. vaan, G. fahne,
OHG. fano cloth, gund fano flag, Icel. f[=a]ni, Sw. fana,
Dan. fane, Goth. fana cloth, L. pannus, and perhaps to Gr.
ph^nos a web, phni`on a bobbin, spool. Cf. Fanon, Pane a
1. A contrivance attached to some elevated object for the
purpose of showing which way the wind blows; a
weathercock. It is usually a plate or strip of metal, or
slip of wood, often cut into some fanciful form, and
placed upon a perpendicular axis around which it moves
Aye undiscreet, and changing as a vane. --Chaucer.
2. Any flat, extended surface attached to an axis and moved
by the wind; as, the vane of a windmill; hence, a similar
fixture of any form moved in or by water, air, or other
fluid; as, the vane of a screw propeller, a fan blower, an
3. (Zool.) The rhachis and web of a feather taken together.
4. One of the sights of a compass, quadrant, etc.
Vane of a leveling staff. (Surv.) Same as Target, 3.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: mechanical device attached to an elevated structure;
rotates freely to show the direction of the wind [syn:
weathervane, weather vane, vane, wind vane]
2: a fin attached to the tail of an arrow, bomb or missile in
order to stabilize or guide it
3: flat surface that rotates and pushes against air or water
[syn: blade, vane]
4: the flattened weblike part of a feather consisting of a
series of barbs on either side of the shaft [syn: vane,