Sharp practice
Sharp Sharp, a. [Compar. {Sharper}; superl. {Sharpest}.] [OE. sharp, scharp, scarp, AS. scearp; akin to OS. skarp, LG. scharp, D. scherp, G. scharf, Dan. & Sw. skarp, Icel. skarpr. Cf. {Escarp}, {Scrape}, {Scorpion}.] 1. Having a very thin edge or fine point; of a nature to cut or pierce easily; not blunt or dull; keen. [1913 Webster]

He dies upon my scimeter's sharp point. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. Terminating in a point or edge; not obtuse or rounded; somewhat pointed or edged; peaked or ridged; as, a sharp hill; sharp features. [1913 Webster]

3. Affecting the sense as if pointed or cutting, keen, penetrating, acute: to the taste or smell, pungent, acid, sour, as ammonia has a sharp taste and odor; to the hearing, piercing, shrill, as a sharp sound or voice; to the eye, instantaneously brilliant, dazzling, as a sharp flash. [1913 Webster]

4. (Mus.) (a) High in pitch; acute; as, a sharp note or tone. (b) Raised a semitone in pitch; as, C sharp (C[sharp]), which is a half step, or semitone, higher than C. (c) So high as to be out of tune, or above true pitch; as, the tone is sharp; that instrument is sharp. Opposed in all these senses to {flat}. [1913 Webster]

5. Very trying to the feelings; piercing; keen; severe; painful; distressing; as, sharp pain, weather; a sharp and frosty air. [1913 Webster]

Sharp misery had worn him to the bones. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

The morning sharp and clear. --Cowper. [1913 Webster]

In sharpest perils faithful proved. --Keble. [1913 Webster]

6. Cutting in language or import; biting; sarcastic; cruel; harsh; rigorous; severe; as, a sharp rebuke. ``That sharp look.'' --Tennyson. [1913 Webster]

To that place the sharp Athenian law Can not pursue us. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Be thy words severe, Sharp as merits but the sword forbear. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

7. Of keen perception; quick to discern or distinguish; having nice discrimination; acute; penetrating; sagacious; clever; as, a sharp eye; sharp sight, hearing, or judgment. [1913 Webster]

Nothing makes men sharper . . . than want. --Addison. [1913 Webster]

Many other things belong to the material world, wherein the sharpest philosophers have never ye? arrived at clear and distinct ideas. --L. Watts. [1913 Webster]

8. Eager in pursuit; keen in quest; impatient for gratification; keen; as, a sharp appetite. [1913 Webster]

9. Fierce; ardent; fiery; violent; impetuous. ``In sharp contest of battle.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster]

A sharp assault already is begun. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

10. Keenly or unduly attentive to one's own interest; close and exact in dealing; shrewd; as, a sharp dealer; a sharp customer. [1913 Webster]

The necessity of being so sharp and exacting. --Swift. [1913 Webster]

11. Composed of hard, angular grains; gritty; as, sharp sand. --Moxon. [1913 Webster]

12. Steep; precipitous; abrupt; as, a sharp ascent or descent; a sharp turn or curve. [1913 Webster]

13. (Phonetics) Uttered in a whisper, or with the breath alone, without voice, as certain consonants, such as p, k, t, f; surd; nonvocal; aspirated. [1913 Webster]

Note: Sharp is often used in the formation of self-explaining compounds; as, sharp-cornered, sharp-edged, sharp-pointed, sharp-tasted, sharp-visaged, etc. [1913 Webster]

{Sharp practice}, the getting of an advantage, or the attempt to do so, by a tricky expedient.

{To brace sharp}, or {To sharp up} (Naut.), to turn the yards to the most oblique position possible, that the ship may lie well up to the wind. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Keen; acute; piercing; penetrating; quick; sagacious; discerning; shrewd; witty; ingenious; sour; acid; tart; pungent; acrid; severe; poignant; biting; acrimonious; sarcastic; cutting; bitter; painful; afflictive; violent; harsh; fierce; ardent; fiery. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sharp practice — index artifice, knavery, maneuver (trick), misdoing, pettifoggery, ruse Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton …   Law dictionary

  • sharp practice — ➔ practice * * * sharp practice UK US noun [U] UK COMMERCE ► a way of behaving in business that is dishonest but not illegal: »The building industry brought in rules to protect customers from sharp practice. »The penalties for sharp practice in… …   Financial and business terms

  • sharp practice — noun uncount OLD FASHIONED dishonest business activities …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • sharp practice — ► NOUN ▪ dishonest or barely honest dealings …   English terms dictionary

  • sharp practice — N UNCOUNT (disapproval) You can use sharp practice to refer to an action or a way of behaving, especially in business or professional matters, that you think is clever but dishonest. He accused some solicitors of sharp practice in quoting low… …   English dictionary

  • sharp practice —    Trying to achieve something by using underhand, deceitful or dishonourable means, that are barely within the law, is called sharp practice.     That company is under investigation for sharp practice so it s better to avoid dealing with them …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • sharp practice — noun Commercial activity that is possibly dishonest while not actually being illegal. The typical political sharp practice of manipulating history to suit the current agenda. Syn: bad faith …   Wiktionary

  • sharp practice — noun : dealing in which advantage is taken or sought unscrupulously; also : a particular piece of or custom involving such dealing determined to put down sharp practices in his department …   Useful english dictionary

  • sharp practice — noun Date: 1836 the act of dealing in which advantage is taken or sought unscrupulously …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • sharp practice — dubious business, questionable business …   English contemporary dictionary

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