1an apparatus with rotating blades that creates a current of air for cooling or ventilation: a couple of ceiling fans, lazily turning the kitchen may need to be fitted with an extractor fan a small sail for keeping the head of a windmill towards the wind.
2a handheld device, typically folding and shaped like a segment of a circle when spread out, that is waved so as to cool the person holding it: the girls were giggling behind their fans a thing resembling an open fan: [as modifier]:fan vaulting a fan-shaped alluvial or talus deposit at the foot of a slope: there are great waste fans at the foot of the Andes in the desert 1 [with object] cool (someone or something) by waving an object to create a current of air:he fanned himself with his hat (of breath or a breeze) blow gently on:his breath fanned her skin as he leant towards her [with object and adverbial of direction] brush or drive away with a waving movement:a veil of smoke which she fanned away with a jewelled hand [no object] Baseball
& Ice Hockey swing unsuccessfully at the ball or puck: he had fanned 37 times in 83 at-bats
Baseball strike out (a batter): Norris fanned nine batters with his screwball 2 [with object] increase the strength of (a fire) by blowing on it or stirring up the air near it:fanned by an easterly wind, the fire spread rapidly cause (a belief or emotion) to become stronger or more widespread:a fury fanned by press coverage
3 [no object]
) disperse or radiate from a central point to cover a wide area:the arriving passengers began to fan out through the town in search of lodgings
spread out or cause to spread out into a semicircular shape: [no object]:a dress made of tiny pleats that fanned out as she walked [with object]:a wind fanned her hair out behind her