Hard and fast
Fast Fast, a. [Compar. {Faster}; superl. {Fastest}.] [OE., firm, strong, not loose, AS. f[ae]st; akin to OS. fast, D. vast, OHG. fasti, festi, G. fest, Icel. fastr, Sw. & Dan. fast, and perh. to E. fetter. The sense swift comes from the idea of keeping close to what is pursued; a Scandinavian use. Cf. {Fast}, adv., {Fast}, v., {Avast}.] 1. Firmly fixed; closely adhering; made firm; not loose, unstable, or easily moved; immovable; as, to make fast the door. [1913 Webster]

There is an order that keeps things fast. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

2. Firm against attack; fortified by nature or art; impregnable; strong. [1913 Webster]

Outlaws . . . lurking in woods and fast places. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

3. Firm in adherence; steadfast; not easily separated or alienated; faithful; as, a fast friend. [1913 Webster]

4. Permanent; not liable to fade by exposure to air or by washing; durable; lasting; as, fast colors. [1913 Webster]

5. Tenacious; retentive. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

Roses, damask and red, are fast flowers of their smells. --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

6. Not easily disturbed or broken; deep; sound. [1913 Webster]

All this while in a most fast sleep. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

7. Moving rapidly; quick in mition; rapid; swift; as, a fast horse. [1913 Webster]

8. Given to pleasure seeking; disregardful of restraint; reckless; wild; dissipated; dissolute; as, a fast man; a fast liver. --Thackeray. [1913 Webster]

9. In such a condition, as to resilience, etc., as to make possible unusual rapidity of play or action; as, a fast racket, or tennis court; a fast track; a fast billiard table, etc. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

{Fast and loose}, now cohering, now disjoined; inconstant, esp. in the phrases to play at fast and loose, to play fast and loose, to act with giddy or reckless inconstancy or in a tricky manner; to say one thing and do another. ``Play fast and loose with faith.'' --Shak.

{Fast and loose pulleys} (Mach.), two pulleys placed side by side on a revolving shaft, which is driven from another shaft by a band, and arranged to disengage and re["e]ngage the machinery driven thereby. When the machinery is to be stopped, the band is transferred from the pulley fixed to the shaft to the pulley which revolves freely upon it, and vice versa.

{Hard and fast} (Naut.), so completely aground as to be immovable.

{To make fast} (Naut.), to make secure; to fasten firmly, as a vessel, a rope, or a door. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Hard and fast — Hard Hard (h[aum]rd), a. [Compar. {Harder} ( [ e]r); superl. {Hardest}.] [OE. hard, heard, AS. heard; akin to OS. & D. hard, G. hart, OHG. herti, harti, Icel. har[eth]r, Dan. haard, Sw. h[*a]rd, Goth. hardus, Gr. kraty s strong, ka rtos, kra tos …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hard-and-fast — UK US (also hard and fast) adjective ► definite and not to be changed, avoided, or ignored: »hard and fast deadlines/plans/guidelines hard and fast evidence/facts/answers »With whale research, hard and fast facts are difficult to come by. »There… …   Financial and business terms

  • hard-and-fast — adjective 1. ) not able to be changed: hard and fast rules/regulations 2. ) clear and not able to be questioned: hard and fast distinctions …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • hard-and-fast — adj. invariable; firmly established; as, hard and fast regulations. Syn: strict. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hard-and-fast — hard′ and fast′ adj. strongly binding; not to be set aside or violated: hard and fast rules[/ex] • Etymology: 1865–70 hard′ and fast′ness, n …   From formal English to slang

  • hard-and-fast — adj [only before noun] clear, definite, and always able to be used ▪ It is impossible to give hard and fast rules , but here are some points to consider …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • hard-and-fast — hard and fastness, n. /hahrd n fast , fahst /, adj. strongly binding; not to be set aside or violated: hard and fast rules. [1865 70] Syn. fixed, precise, inflexible, inviolable, rigorous, unambiguous. * * * …   Universalium

  • hard and fast — ► hard and fast (of a rule or distinction) fixed and definitive. Main Entry: ↑hard …   English terms dictionary

  • hard-and-fast — adjective (of rules) stringently enforced hard and fast rules • Syn: ↑strict • Similar to: ↑invariable • Derivationally related forms: ↑strictness (for: ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • hard and fast — ADJ: usu with brd neg, usu ADJ n If you say that there are no hard and fast rules, or that there is no hard and fast information about something, you are indicating that there are no fixed or definite rules or facts. There are no hard and fast… …   English dictionary

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