Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The terminal part of the human arm located below the forearm, used for grasping and holding and consisting of the wrist, palm, four fingers, and an opposable thumb.
  • n. A homologous or similar part in other animals, as the terminal part of the forelimb in certain vertebrates.
  • n. A unit of length equal to 4 inches (10.2 centimeters), used especially to specify the height of a horse.
  • n. Something suggesting the shape or function of the human hand, especially:
  • n. Any of the rotating pointers used as indexes on the face of a mechanical clock.
  • n. A pointer, as on a gauge or dial.
  • n. Printing See index.
  • n. Lateral direction indicated according to the way in which one is facing: at my right hand.
  • n. A style or individual sample of writing.
  • n. A signature: put my hand to the contract.
  • n. A round of applause to signify approval.
  • n. Physical assistance; help: gave me a hand with the bags.
  • n. Sports A handball in soccer.
  • n. Games The cards held in a card game by a given player at any time.
  • n. Games The number of cards dealt each player; the deal.
  • n. Games A player or participant in a card game: We need a fourth hand for bridge.
  • n. Games A portion or section of a game during which all the cards dealt out are played: a hand of poker.
  • n. One who performs manual labor: a factory hand.
  • n. One who is part of a group or crew: the ship's hands.
  • n. A participant in an activity, often one who specializes in a particular activity or pursuit: an old hand at labor negotiations.
  • n. The degree of immediacy of a source of information; degree of reliability: heard the scandalous tale at third hand.
  • n. The strength or force of one's position: negotiated from a strong hand.
  • n. Possession, ownership, or keeping. Often used in the plural: The books should be in your hands by noon.
  • n. Power; jurisdiction; care: The defendant's fate is in the hands of the jury. Dinner is in the chef's hands.
  • n. Involvement or participation: "In all this was evident the hand of the counterrevolutionaries” ( John Reed).
  • n. An influence or effect: The manager had a hand in all major decisions.
  • n. Evidence of craft or artistic skill: can see the hand of a genius even in the lighter poems.
  • n. An aptitude or ability: I tried my hand at decorating.
  • n. The aesthetic feel or tactile quality of something, such as a fabric, textile, or carpeting, that indicates its fineness, texture, and durability.
  • n. A manner or way of performing something: a light hand with makeup.
  • n. Permission or a promise, especially a pledge to wed.
  • n. A commitment or agreement, especially when sealed by a handshake; one's word: You have my hand on that.
  • transitive v. To give or pass with or as if with the hands; transmit: Hand me your keys.
  • transitive v. To aid, direct, or conduct with the hands: The usher handed the patron to a reserved seat.
  • transitive v. Nautical To roll up and secure (a sail); furl.
  • transitive v. Sports To give (the ball) directly to a teammate, as in football. Often used with off.
  • transitive v. Sports To carry, strike, or propel (the ball) with the hand or arm in violation of the rules in soccer.
  • intransitive v. Sports To make a handoff, as in football. Often used with off.
  • hand down To bequeath to one's heirs.
  • hand down To make and pronounce (an official decision, especially a court verdict).
  • hand on To turn over to another.
  • hand out To distribute freely; disseminate.
  • hand out To administer or deal out.
  • hand over To release or relinquish to another.
  • hand up To deliver (an indictment) to a higher judicial authority.
  • idiom at hand Close by; near.
  • idiom at hand Soon in time; imminent: Retribution is at hand.
  • idiom hand By or through the agency of: favors he received at the hands of his uncle.
  • idiom by hand By using the hands; manually.
  • idiom get To get possessioon of; acquire or obtain.
  • idiom hand and foot With concerted, never-ending effort: had to wait on them hand and foot.
  • idiom in On intimate terms or in close association: "The folklore of American academia says that publishing and teaching go hand in glove” ( Edward B. Fiske).
  • idiom hand in hand In cooperation; jointly.
  • idiom hand it to Informal To give credit to: You've got to hand it to her; she knows what she's doing.
  • idiom hand over fist At a tremendous rate: made money hand over fist.
  • idiom hands down With no trouble; easily.
  • idiom hands down Indisputably; unquestionably.
  • idiom in hand In one's possession: arrived with the contract in hand.
  • idiom in hand Under control: kept the tense situation in hand.
  • idiom in hand Under consideration: gave her attention to the matter in hand.
  • idiom in hand In preparation or process: With the work finally in hand, we began to see progress.
  • idiom in hand Sports Remaining to be played by one team but not by another: Their team is ahead in the standings, but our team has two games in hand.
  • idiom off (one's) hands No longer under one's jurisdiction, within one's responsibility, or in one's care: We finally got that project off our hands.
  • idiom on hand Present; available: Are there enough people on hand to hold a meeting?
  • idiom on hand About to happen; imminent; What is on hand for this evening?
  • idiom on In one's possession, often as an imposed responsibility or burden: Now they have the grandchildren on their hands.
  • idiom on the one hand As one point of view; from one standpoint.
  • idiom on the other hand As another point of view; from another standpoint.
  • idiom out of hand Out of control: Employee absenteeism has gotten out of hand.
  • idiom out of hand At once; immediately.
  • idiom out of hand Over and done with; finished.
  • idiom out of hand Uncalled for or improper; indiscreet.
  • idiom to hand Nearby.
  • idiom to hand In one's possession.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in a human, and the corresponding part in many other animals.
  • n. That which resembles, or to some extent performs the office of, a human hand; as,
  • n. In linear measurement:
  • n. A side; part, camp; direction, either right or left.
  • n. Power of performance; means of execution; ability; skill; dexterity.
  • n. A point of view.
  • n. Actual performance; deed; act; workmanship; agency; hence, manner of performance.
  • n. An agent; a servant, or manual laborer, especially in compounds; a workman, trained or competent for special service or duty; a performer more or less skillful; as,
  • n. An instance of helping.
  • n. Handwriting; style of penmanship.
  • n. A person's signature.
  • n. Personal possession; ownership.
  • n. Management, domain, control.
  • n. That which is, or may be, held in a hand at once.
  • n. Applause.
  • n. Agency in transmission from one person to another.
  • n. The feel of a fabric; the impression or quality of the fabric as judged qualitatively by the sense of touch.
  • n. Rate; price.
  • n. The small part of a gunstock near the lock, which is grasped by the hand in taking aim.
  • v. To give, pass, or transmit with the hand.
  • v. To lead, guide, or assist with the hand; to conduct.
  • v. To manage.
  • v. To seize; to lay hands on.
  • v. To pledge by the hand; to handfast.
  • v. To furl.
  • v. To cooperate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. That part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in man and monkeys, and the corresponding part in many other animals; manus; paw. See manus.
  • n. That which resembles, or to some extent performs the office of, a human hand.
  • n. A limb of certain animals, as the foot of a hawk, or any one of the four extremities of a monkey.
  • n. An index or pointer on a dial.
  • n. A measure equal to a hand's breadth, -- four inches; a palm. Chiefly used in measuring the height of horses.
  • n. Side; part; direction, either right or left.
  • n. Power of performance; means of execution; ability; skill; dexterity.
  • n. Actual performance; deed; act; workmanship; agency; hence, manner of performance.
  • n. An agent; a servant, or laborer; a workman, trained or competent for special service or duty; a performer more or less skillful
  • n. Handwriting; style of penmanship. Hence, a signature.
  • n. Personal possession; ownership; hence, control; direction; management; -- usually in the plural.
  • n. Agency in transmission from one person to another.
  • n. Rate; price.
  • n. That which is, or may be, held in a hand at once.
  • n. The quota of cards received from the dealer.
  • n. A bundle of tobacco leaves tied together.
  • n. The small part of a gunstock near the lock, which is grasped by the hand in taking aim.
  • n. A gambling game played by American Indians, consisting of guessing the whereabouts of bits of ivory or the like, which are passed rapidly from hand to hand.
  • intransitive v. To coöperate.
  • transitive v. To give, pass, or transmit with the hand.
  • transitive v. To lead, guide, or assist with the hand; to conduct.
  • transitive v. To manage.
  • transitive v. To seize; to lay hands on.
  • transitive v. To pledge by the hand; to handfast.
  • transitive v. To furl; -- said of a sail.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To give or transmit by means of the hand.
  • To lead, guide, or help with the hand; conduct: as, to hand a lady to a carriage.
  • To manage with the hand or hands; manipulate; handle.
  • To seize; lay hands on.
  • Nautical, to furl, as a sail.
  • To pledge by the hand; handfast.
  • To go hand in hand; coöperate.
  • Nautical, to ship as one of a crew; be or become a hand before the mast.
  • n. The end of the arm or fore limb from the wrist outward, consisting of the palm, fingers, and thumb, and fitted for grasping objects.
  • n. In anatomy, technically, the terminal segment of the fore limb of any vertebrate above fishes, consisting of three divisions, the carpus, metacarpus, and phalanges; the manus: the correlative of the pes of the hind limb. In this sense the term hand is used irrespective of modifications in structure or function. See manus, and cut under pinion.
  • n. The end of any limb which grasps, holds, or clings, as the hind foot of a monkey, a bat, an opossum, etc.
  • n. A measure of four inches; a palm: used chiefly in measuring the height of horses: as, a horse 14 hands high.
  • n. Side; part; direction, to either right or left: used both literally and figuratively: as, on the one hand or the other.
  • n. The mode of using the hand; touch; hence, skill in doing something with the hands, as controlling a horse by drawing upon the bit with the reins.
  • n. Performance; handiwork; workmanship.
  • n. Manner of acting or performance; mode of action.
  • n. Agency; part in performing or executing; active coöperation in doing something.
  • n. Possession; power; rule; control; authority: commonly in the plural.
  • n. In card-playing: The cards held by a single player.
  • n. A single round at a game, in which all the cards dealt at one time are played.
  • n. One of the players.
  • n. A game at cards.
  • n. In heraldry, the representation of a human hand, usually couped at the wrist.
  • n. Something resembling the hand in shape or appearance, as in having five or more divisions (fingers), or in use, as in pointing, etc.
  • n. One of the groups, formed of one or two rows of the fruit arranged athwart the main stem of the bunch, into which a bunch of bananas or plantains naturally divides. A hand may contain from 8 to 20 separate fruits.
  • n. A bundle or head of tobacco-leaves tied together, without being stripped from the stem.
  • n. Five things sold together, as five oranges or five herrings.
  • n. A figure like a hand used on sign-posts, etc., to indicate direction, or in print (as ) to call attention to a particular sentence or paragraph; an index.
  • n. An index of a clock, watch, or dial of any kind, pointing out its divisions; a pointer: as, the hour- and minute-hands of a clock.
  • n. One who is engaged in some particular manual employment, as in a factory or on a ship; a workman or workwoman.
  • n. A person as acting in any way or doing any specified thing: as, a good hand at a bargain; all hands gave assistance.
  • n. Style of penmanship; handwriting; chirography.
  • n. A sign-manual; a signature.
  • n. Terms; conditions; rate; price.
  • n. A round of applause: as, he did not get a hand to-night.
  • n. Pledge of marriage made by or for a woman; betrothal or bestowment in marriage.
  • n. In some uses, a handle. See handle.
  • n. A shoulder of pork.
  • n. In Anglo-Saxon history, protection conferred by one in power or by the general community.
  • n. [Hand is much used in composition, in reference to something made or done or to be managed or worked by hand, as hand-barrow, hand-bell, hand-loom, hand-saw, etc., or to that which is at hand, as handmaid, etc.]
  • n. Near in time; not distant.
  • n. In the state of preparation or execution; under examination, attention, etc.
  • n. Accustomed to use the hands, especially in boxing or fighting.
  • n. By every one.
  • n. Under consideration; in intention; on foot.
  • n. Off one's hands; done; ended.
  • n. To be occupied with.
  • n. To be in practice or skilled in any matter: as, he will do it well as soon as his hand is in.
  • n. to have to do with; be occupied with or engaged in.
  • n. To keep in a state of uncertainty; toy with; keep in expectation; amuse with the view of gaining some advantage.
  • n. To bless, heal, ordain, etc., by the imposition of hands.
  • n. To assist with; lend a hand to.
  • n. To make another's cause one's own; join interests.
  • n. To seize or consider and deal with: as, to take one's case in hand.
  • n. One who, in the early days of Australian history, had been a convict.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. place into the hands or custody of
  • n. something written by hand
  • n. a hired laborer on a farm or ranch
  • n. a card player in a game of bridge
  • n. ability
  • n. the (prehensile) extremity of the superior limb
  • n. terminal part of the forelimb in certain vertebrates (e.g. apes or kangaroos)
  • n. a position given by its location to the side of an object
  • v. guide or conduct or usher somewhere
  • n. a rotating pointer on the face of a timepiece
  • n. the cards held in a card game by a given player at any given time
  • n. a round of applause to signify approval
  • n. a unit of length equal to 4 inches; used in measuring horses
  • n. one of two sides of an issue
  • n. physical assistance
  • n. a member of the crew of a ship

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old English.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old English hand ("hand, side (in defining position), power, control, possession, charge, agency, person regarded as holder or receiver of something"), from Proto-Germanic *handuz (“hand”) (compare Dutch, Swedish hand, German Hand, West Frisian hân), from Proto-Germanic *hinþanan (compare Old Swedish hinna 'to gain', Gothic frahinþan 'to take captive, capture'), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱent-, *ḱemt- 'to grasp' (compare Latvian sīts 'hunting spear', Ancient Greek κεντέω ("prick"), Albanian çandër 'pitchfork, prop').

Examples

Comments

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  • After awhile you learn

    the subtle difference between

    holding a hand and chaining a soul ...

    - Veronica A. Shoffstall, 'You Learn'.

    July 26, 2009

  • from God, rod

    July 23, 2009

  • And in a cryptic academic hand:

    '"Iuppiter ex alto periuria ridet amantumn" 15s 6d.'

    - Peter Reading, '"Iuppiter ex alto periuria ridet amantumn" 15s 6d.', from Nothing for Anyone, 1977

    June 26, 2008