At first hand
First First (f[~e]rst), a. [OE. first, furst, AS. fyrst; akin to Icel. fyrstr, Sw. & Dan. f["o]rste, OHG. furist, G. f["u]rst prince; a superlatiye form of E. for, fore. See {For}, {Fore}, and cf. {Formeer}, {Foremost}.] 1. Preceding all others of a series or kind; the ordinal of one; earliest; as, the first day of a month; the first year of a reign. [1913 Webster]

2. Foremost; in front of, or in advance of, all others. [1913 Webster]

3. Most eminent or exalted; most excellent; chief; highest; as, Demosthenes was the first orator of Greece. [1913 Webster]

{At first blush}. See under {Blush}.

{At first hand}, from the first or original source; without the intervention of any agent. [1913 Webster]

It is the intention of the person to reveal it at first hand, by way of mouth, to yourself. --Dickens.

{First coat} (Plastering), the solid foundation of coarse stuff, on which the rest is placed; it is thick, and crossed with lines, so as to give a bond for the next coat.

{First day}, Sunday; -- so called by the Friends.

{First floor}. (a) The ground floor. [U.S.] (b) The floor next above the ground floor. [Eng.]

{First fruit} or {First fruits}. (a) The fruits of the season earliest gathered. (b) (Feudal Law) One year's profits of lands belonging to the king on the death of a tenant who held directly from him. (c) (Eng. Eccl. Law) The first year's whole profits of a benefice or spiritual living. (d) The earliest effects or results. [1913 Webster]

See, Father, what first fruits on earth are sprung From thy implanted grace in man! --Milton.

{First mate}, an officer in a merchant vessel next in rank to the captain.

{First name}, same as {Christian name}. See under {Name}, n.

{First officer} (Naut.), in the merchant service, same as {First mate} (above).

{First sergeant} (Mil.), the ranking non-commissioned officer in a company; the orderly sergeant. --Farrow.

{First watch} (Naut.), the watch from eight to twelve at midnight; also, the men on duty during that time.

{First water}, the highest quality or purest luster; -- said of gems, especially of diamond and pearls.

Syn: Primary; primordial; primitive; primeval; pristine; highest; chief; principal; foremost. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • At first hand — Hand Hand (h[a^]nd), n. [AS. hand, hond; akin to D., G., & Sw. hand, OHG. hant, Dan. haand, Icel. h[ o]nd, Goth. handus, and perh. to Goth. hin[thorn]an to seize (in comp.). Cf. {Hunt}.] 1. That part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • (at) first hand — (at) first ˈhand idiom by experiencing, seeing, etc. sth yourself rather than being told about it by sb else • The President visited the area to see the devastation at first hand. Main entry: ↑handidiom …   Useful english dictionary

  • at first hand — ► at first hand directly or from personal experience. Main Entry: ↑first hand …   English terms dictionary

  • at first hand — adverb from the original source; directly I heard this story firsthand • Syn: ↑firsthand * * * adverb : firsthand got the facts at first hand by going in person to the scene of the accident * * * at first hand Directly from the source …   Useful english dictionary

  • (at) first hand —    If you experience something yourself directly, without any intermediary, you experience it (at) first hand.     Getting to see the performance (at) first hand is much better than watching it on television …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • at first hand — from seeing or experiencing directly. For Carter, the visit was a chance to see at first hand the life and work of someone he admired …   New idioms dictionary

  • at first hand — directly or from personal experience. → first hand …   English new terms dictionary

  • at first hand — from a primary source …   English contemporary dictionary

  • At any hand — Hand Hand (h[a^]nd), n. [AS. hand, hond; akin to D., G., & Sw. hand, OHG. hant, Dan. haand, Icel. h[ o]nd, Goth. handus, and perh. to Goth. hin[thorn]an to seize (in comp.). Cf. {Hunt}.] 1. That part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • At no hand — Hand Hand (h[a^]nd), n. [AS. hand, hond; akin to D., G., & Sw. hand, OHG. hant, Dan. haand, Icel. h[ o]nd, Goth. handus, and perh. to Goth. hin[thorn]an to seize (in comp.). Cf. {Hunt}.] 1. That part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”