Etymology
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roan (adj.)

1520s, of horses, "of a bay, sorrel, or chestnut color, thickly interspersed with gray or white, from French roan "reddish brown," perhaps from Spanish roano, from Old Spanish raudano, probably from a Germanic source (compare Gothic raudan, accusative of rauðs "red"), from PIE root *reudh- "red, ruddy." As a noun, "a roan horse," 1570s.

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Definitions of roan
1
roan (n.)
a soft sheepskin leather that is colored and finished to resemble morocco; used in bookbinding;
roan (n.)
a horse having a brownish coat thickly sprinkled with white or gray;
2
roan (adj.)
(used of especially horses) having a brownish coat thickly sprinkled with white or grey;
a roan horse
From wordnet.princeton.edu