To cut the knot
Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach short, docked, cut a bobtail, piece, Ir. cut a short tail, cutach bobtailed. Cf. {Coot}.] 1. To separate the parts of with, or as with, a sharp instrument; to make an incision in; to gash; to sever; to divide. [1913 Webster]

You must cut this flesh from off his breast. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Before the whistling winds the vessels fly, With rapid swiftness cut the liquid way. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

2. To sever and cause to fall for the purpose of gathering; to hew; to mow or reap. [1913 Webster]

Thy servants can skill to cut timer. --2. Chron. ii. 8 [1913 Webster]

3. To sever and remove by cutting; to cut off; to dock; as, to cut the hair; to cut the nails. [1913 Webster]

4. To castrate or geld; as, to cut a horse. [1913 Webster]

5. To form or shape by cutting; to make by incision, hewing, etc.; to carve; to hew out. [1913 Webster]

Why should a man. whose blood is warm within, Sit like his grandsire cut in alabaster? --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Loopholes cut through thickest shade. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

6. To wound or hurt deeply the sensibilities of; to pierce; to lacerate; as, sarcasm cuts to the quick. [1913 Webster]

The man was cut to the heart. --Addison. [1913 Webster]

7. To intersect; to cross; as, one line cuts another at right angles. [1913 Webster]

8. To refuse to recognize; to ignore; as, to cut a person in the street; to cut one's acquaintance. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]

9. To absent one's self from; as, to cut an appointment, a recitation. etc. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]

An English tradesman is always solicitous to cut the shop whenever he can do so with impunity. --Thomas Hamilton. [1913 Webster]

10. (Cricket) To deflect (a bowled ball) to the off, with a chopping movement of the bat. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

11. (Billiards, etc.) To drive (an object ball) to either side by hitting it fine on the other side with the cue ball or another object ball. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

12. (Lawn Tennis, etc.) To strike (a ball) with the racket inclined or struck across the ball so as to put a certain spin on the ball. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

13. (Croquet) To drive (a ball) to one side by hitting with another ball. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

{To cut a caper}. See under {Caper}.

{To cut the cards}, to divide a pack of cards into portions, in order to determine the deal or the trump, or to change the cards to be dealt.

{To cut both ways}, to have effects both advantageous and disadvantageous.

{To cut corners}, to deliberately do an incomplete or imperfect job in order to save time or money.

{To cut a dash} or {To cut a figure}, to make a display of oneself; to give a conspicuous impression. [Colloq.]

{To cut down}. (a) To sever and cause to fall; to fell; to prostrate. ``Timber . . . cut down in the mountains of Cilicia.'' --Knolles. (b) To put down; to abash; to humble. [Obs] ``So great is his natural eloquence, that he cuts down the finest orator.'' --Addison (c) To lessen; to retrench; to curtail; as, to cut down expenses. (d) (Naut.) To raze; as, to cut down a frigate into a sloop.

{To cut the knot} or {To cut the Gordian knot}, to dispose of a difficulty summarily; to solve it by prompt, arbitrary action, rather than by skill or patience.

{To cut lots}, to determine lots by cuttings cards; to draw lots.

{To cut off}. (a) To sever; to separate. [1913 Webster +PJC]

I would to God, . . . The king had cut off my brother's. --Shak. (b) To put an untimely death; to put an end to; to destroy. ``Iren[ae]us was likewise cut off by martyrdom.'' --Addison. (c) To interrupt; as, to cut off communication; to cut off (the flow of) steam from (the boiler to) a steam engine. (d) To intercept; as,, to cut off an enemy's retreat. (e) To end; to finish; as, to cut off further debate.

{To cut out}. (a) To remove by cutting or carving; as, to cut out a piece from a board. (b) To shape or form by cutting; as, to cut out a garment. `` A large forest cut out into walks.'' --Addison. (c) To scheme; to contrive; to prepare; as, to cut out work for another day. ``Every man had cut out a place for himself.'' --Addison. (d) To step in and take the place of; to supplant; as, to cut out a rival. [Colloq.] (e) To debar. ``I am cut out from anything but common acknowledgments.'' --Pope. (f) To seize and carry off (a vessel) from a harbor, or from under the guns of an enemy. (g) to separate from the midst of a number; as, to cut out a steer from a herd; to cut out a car from a train. (h) to discontinue; as, to cut out smoking.

{To cut to pieces}. (a) To cut into pieces; as, to cut cloth to pieces. (b) To slaughter; as, to cut an army to pieces.

{To cut a play} (Drama), to shorten it by leaving out passages, to adapt it for the stage.

{To cut rates} (Railroads, etc.), to reduce the charges for transportation below the rates established between competing lines.

{To cut short}, to arrest or check abruptly; to bring to a sudden termination. ``Achilles cut him short, and thus replied.'' --Dryden.

{To cut stick}, to make off clandestinely or precipitately. [Slang]

{To cut teeth}, to put forth teeth; to have the teeth pierce through the gum and appear.

{To have cut one's eyeteeth}, to be sharp and knowing. [Colloq.]

{To cut one's wisdom teeth}, to come to years of discretion.

{To cut under}, to undersell; as, to cut under a competitor in trade; more commonly referred to as {undercut}.

{To cut up}. (a) To cut to pieces; as, to cut up an animal, or bushes. (b) To damage or destroy; to injure; to wound; as, to cut up a book or its author by severe criticism. ``This doctrine cuts up all government by the roots.'' --Locke. (c) To afflict; to discourage; to demoralize; as, the death of his friend cut him up terribly. [Colloq.] --Thackeray. [1913 Webster +PJC]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To cut the Gordian knot — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut the cards — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Cut-the-Knot — is a free, advertisement funded educational website maintained by Alexander Bogomolny and devoted to popular exposition of many topics in mathematics. The site has won more than 20 awards from scientific and educational publications,[1] including …   Wikipedia

  • cut the knot — phrasal : to resolve a difficulty by prompt arbitrary action see gordian knot …   Useful english dictionary

  • To cut a caper — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut a dash — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut a figure — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut a play — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut both ways — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cut corners — Cut Cut (k[u^]t), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cut}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cutting}.] [OE. cutten, kitten, ketten; prob. of Celtic origin; cf. W. cwtau to shorten, curtail, dock, cwta bobtailed, cwt tail, skirt, Gael. cutaich to shorten, curtail, dock, cutach …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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