Fast and loose

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:

  • Fast and loose — Loose Loose (l[=oo]s), a. [Compar. {Looser} (l[=oo]s [ e]r); superl. {Loosest}.] [OE. loos, lous, laus, Icel. lauss; akin to OD. loos, D. los, AS. le[ a]s false, deceitful, G. los, loose, Dan. & Sw. l[ o]s, Goth. laus, and E. lose. [root]127. See …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Fast and Loose — may refer to:Fast and Loose (con game) a cheating game sometimes known as The Strap Fast and Loose (film) a 1930 romatic comedy starring Miriam Hopkins and Carole Lombard Fast and Loose (1939 film) a 1939 detective comedy starring Robert… …   Wikipedia

  • fast and loose — described as a cheating game played with a stick and a belt or string, so arranged that a spectator would think he could make the latter fast by placing a stick through its intricate folds, whereas the operator could detach it at once. [James O.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • fast-and-loose — fastˈ and looseˈ noun A cheating game practised at fairs, the dupe being invited to put a stick in the loop of a coiled belt so that it cannot be pulled away (also called prick the garter) • • • Main Entry: ↑fast …   Useful english dictionary

  • fast and loose — index variable Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • fast and loose — adverb : recklessly, irresponsibly : in a craftily deceitful way formerly used in the phrase to play at fast and loose; now usually used in the phrase to play fast and loose playing fast and loose with concepts of right and wrong to justify our… …   Useful english dictionary

  • fast and loose — adverb Date: 1580 1. in a reckless or irresponsible manner < played fast and loose with the public purse strings Paul Stuewe > 2. in a craftily deceitful way < manipulated evidence…and played fast and loose with the truth C. V. Woodward > …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • fast and loose —  Irresponsible; deceitful.  ► “ In Asia, there is the potentially explosive combination of investmentbank salesmen from the financial capitals of the West playing fast and loose and their inexperienced Asian counterparts. The financial fire they… …   American business jargon

  • fast and loose — Synonyms and related words: adrift, afloat, alternating, amorphous, capricious, changeable, changeful, desultory, deviable, dizzy, eccentric, erratic, fickle, fitful, flickering, flighty, flitting, fluctuating, freakish, giddy, impetuous,… …   Moby Thesaurus

  • fast and loose — 1. Variable, inconstant, fickle, uncertain. 2. Slippery, unreliable, tricky, shuffling, evasive, fencing, hedging …   New dictionary of synonyms

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