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hand

Definition from Dictionary, a free dictionary
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A human hand.
See also Hand

English

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Etymology

Old English hand. Cognate with Dutch hand, German Hand, Swedish hand.

Pronunciation

Noun

Singular
hand

Plural
{{{1}}}

hand ({{{1}}})
  1. That part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in a human, and the corresponding part in many other animals; manus; paw. See manus.
  2. That which resembles, or to some extent performs the office of, a human hand; as,
    (a) A limb of certain animals, as the foot of a hawk, or any one of the four extremities of a monkey.
    (b) An index or pointer on a dial; such as the hour or minute hand of a clock
  3. In long measure, two different lengths:
    • (obsolete) Three inches, not to be confused with; and,
    • Four inches, a hand’s breadth, used in measuring the height of horses.
  4. A side; part, camp; direction, either right or left.
    • On this hand and that hand, were hangings. — Exodus 38:15
    • The Protestants were then on the winning handMilton
  5. Power of performance; means of execution; ability; skill; dexterity.
    • He had a great mind to try his hand at a Spectator. — Addison
  6. (archaic) Actual performance; deed; act; workmanship; agency; hence, manner of performance.
    • To change the hand in carrying on the war. — Clarendon
    • Gideon said unto God, If thou wilt save Israel by my hand. — Judges 6:36
  7. 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,
    an old hand at speaking.
    • A dictionary containing a natural history requires too many hands, as well as too much time, ever to be hoped for. — Locke
    • I was always reckoned a lively hand at a simile. — Hazlitt
  8. Handwriting; style of penmanship; as,
    A good, bad or running hand. Hence, a signature.
    • I say she never did invent this letter; This is a man’s invention and his hand — Shakespeare, As You Like It, IV-iii
    • Some writs require a judge’s handBurril
    • 1883, Robert Louis Stevenson, Treasure Island
      I found written on the other side, in a very good, clear hand, this short message...
  9. Personal possession; ownership; hence, control; direction; management; — usually in the plural.
    • Receiving in hand one year’s tribute. — Knolles
    • Milton, Albinus
      ...found means to keep in his hands the government of Britain.
  10. That which is, or may be, held in a hand at once; as
    (a) (gaming, Template loop detected: Template:context 1): The set of cards held by a player.
    (b) (Tobacco Manufacturing): A bundle of tobacco leaves tied together.
  11. Applause.
    Give him a hand.
  12. Agency in transmission from one person to another; as,
    to buy at first hand, that is, from the producer, or when new; at second hand, that is, when no longer in the producer’s hand, or when not new.
  13. (obsolete) Rate; price.
    • Business is bought at a dear hand, where there is small dispatch. — Bacon
  14. Each of the pointers on the face of an analog clock, which are used to indicate the time of day.
  15. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) The small part of a gunstock near the lock, which is grasped by the hand in taking aim.
  16. The collective noun for a bunch of bananas.

Usage notes

Hand is used figuratively for a large variety of acts or things, in the doing, or making, or use of which the hand is in some way employed or concerned; also, as a symbol to denote various qualities or conditions, as,

(a) Activity; operation; work; — in distinction from the head, which implies thought, and the heart, which implies affection.
His hand will be against every man. — Genesis 16:12
(b) Power; might; supremacy; — often in the Scriptures.
With a mighty hand . . . will I rule over you. — Ezekiel 20:33.
(c) Fraternal feeling; as, to give, or take, the hand; to give the right hand
(d) Contract; — commonly of marriage; as, to ask the hand; to pledge the hand.

Quotations

  • 1611King James Version of the Bible, Luke 1:1
    Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us...

Meronyms

Derived terms

Translations

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

See also

Appendix: Collective nouns

Verb

Infinitive
to hand

Third person singular
-

Simple past
-

Past participle
-

Present participle
-

to hand (third-person singular simple present -, present participle -, simple past and past participle -)
  1. (transitive) To give, pass, or transmit with the hand; as
    he handed them the letter.
  2. (transitive) To lead, guide, or assist with the hand; to conduct
    to hand a lady into a carriage.
  3. (transitive) (obsolete) To manage; as, I hand my oar. — Prior
  4. (transitive) (obsolete) To seize; to lay hands on. — Shakespeare
  5. (transitive) (rare) To pledge by the hand; to handfast.
  6. (transitive) (nautical) To furl; — said of a sail. — Totten
  7. (intransitive) (obsolete) To cooperate. — Massinger

Derived terms

Translations

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

References

hand” in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.


Dutch

Pronunciation

Noun

hand f. (plural handen, diminutive handje)

  1. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) hand of a human or other simian

Derived terms


French

Pronunciation

Noun

hand m.

  1. (slang) handball
    On va jouer au hand, tu veux venir?
    We're going to play handball, you want to come?

Synonyms


Old English

Etymology

Common Germanic *handuz

Noun

hand m.

  1. hand

Swedish

Pronunciation

Noun

Inflection for hand Singular Plural
common Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative hand handen händer händerna
Genitive hands handens händers händernas
  1. (anatomy) hand; the body part
    Han tjatade jämt om att hon måste tvätta händerna.
    He was always nagging on her to wash her hands.
  2. (card games) hand; the set of cards held by a player
    Hon fick en bra hand, och satsade högt.
    She was dealt a good set of cards, and placed a high bet.

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