Lean \Lean\ (l[=e]n), a. [Compar. {Leaner} (l[=e]n"[~e]r); superl. {Leanest}.] [OE. lene, AS. hl[=ae]ne; prob. akin to E. lean to incline. See {Lean}, v. i. ] 1. Wanting flesh; destitute of or deficient in fat; slim; not plump; slender; meager; thin; lank; as, a lean body; a lean cattle. [1913 Webster] 2. Wanting fullness, richness, sufficiency, or productiveness; deficient in quality or contents; slender; scant; barren; bare; mean; -- used literally and figuratively; as, the lean harvest; a lean purse; a lean discourse; lean wages. ``No lean wardrobe.'' --Shak. [1913 Webster] Their lean and flashy songs. --Milton. [1913 Webster] What the land is, whether it be fat or lean. --Num. xiii. 20. [1913 Webster] Out of my lean and low ability I'll lend you something. --Shak. [1913 Webster] 3. (Typog.) Of a character which prevents the compositor from earning the usual wages; -- opposed to {fat}; as, lean copy, matter, or type. [1913 Webster] Syn: slender; spare; thin; meager; lank; skinny; gaunt. [1913 Webster]