first water
noun Date: 1753 1. the purest luster — used of gems 2. the highest grade, degree, or quality

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • First Water — means highest quality and is a term which originates from the gemstone trade. The clarity of diamonds is assessed by their translucence; the more like water, the higher the quality. This comparison of diamonds with water dates back to at least… …   Wikipedia

  • First water — 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… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • first water — n. the best quality and purest luster: said of diamonds, pearls, etc., but also used figuratively …   English World dictionary

  • first water — noun the highest quality gems • Hypernyms: ↑superiority, ↑high quality * * * noun 1. : the highest quality or purest luster used of gems (as diamonds and pearls) 2. : the highest grade or excellence …   Useful english dictionary

  • first water — /fɜst ˈwɔtə/ (say ferst wawtuh) noun 1. the highest degree of fineness in a diamond or other precious stone. 2. the highest rank, quality or degree: a musician of the first water. {from the grading of diamonds where quality is indicated by… …   Australian English dictionary

  • first water — first′ wa′ter n. 1) jew (formerly) the highest degree of fineness in a diamond or other precious stone Compare water 13) 2) the finest quality; highest rank • Etymology: 1745–55 …   From formal English to slang

  • first water — 1. (formerly) the highest degree of fineness in a diamond or other precious stone. Cf. water (def. 13). 2. the finest quality; highest rank. [1745 55] * * * …   Universalium

  • first water — Meaning Of the highest quality. Origin From the gem trade. The clarity of diamonds is assessed by their translucence. The more like water, the higher the quality …   Meaning and origin of phrases

  • first water — noun a) The highest quality of gemstones, especially of diamonds and pearls. b) Of the highest rank or quality …   Wiktionary

  • first water — n. top and highest quality gems …   English contemporary dictionary

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