Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of hand
Meaning of hand by Wiktionary Dictionary

hand


    Etymology

    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 Frisian/Dutch/German/Swedish hand ), from Proto-Germanic *hinþanan ( compare Old Swedish hinna 'to gain', Gothic frahinþan 'to take captive, capture' ), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱent- 'to grasp' ( compare Latvian sīts 'hunting spear', Ancient Greek κεντέω ( “prick” ), Albanian çandër 'pitchfork, prop' ) .

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    hand
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    palm
    wrist
    thumb
    index finger
    middle finger
    ring finger
    pinky

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    arm

    Pronunciation

    • IPA: /hænd/, X-SAMPA: /h{nd/
    • Rhymes: -ænd

    Noun

    hand ( plural: hands )

    1. The part of the fore limb below the forearm or wrist in a human, and the corresponding part in many other animals .
    2. That which resembles, or to some extent performs the office of, a human hand; as,
      1. A limb of certain animals, as the foot of a hawk, or any one of the four extremities of a monkey .
      2. An index or pointer on a dial; such as the hour and minute hands on the face of an analog clock, which are used to indicate the time of day .
    3. In linear measurement:
      1. ( obsolete ) Three inches .
      2. ( chiefly in measuring the height of horses ) Four inches, a hand's breadth .
    4. A side; part, camp; direction, either right or left.
    5. Power of performance; means of execution; ability; skill; dexterity.
    6. ( only in certain set phrases ) A point of view .
      On the one hand, he's the best man for the job; but, on the other hand, we may be better off with the job not done than with it done by him .
    7. ( archaic ) Actual performance; deed; act; workmanship; agency; hence, manner of performance.
    8. 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 .
    9. An instance of helping .
      Bob gave Alice a hand to move the furniture .
    10. Handwriting; style of penmanship .
      a good hand
    11. A person's signature .
      Given under my Hand and Seal of the State this 1st Day of January, 2010 .
    12. Personal possession; ownership; hence, control; direction; management; — usually in the plural.
    13. ( often plural:, hands ) Management, domain, control .
      in safe hands, in good hands
      He lost his job when the factory changed hands .
      With the business back in the founder's hands, there is new hope for the company .
      With John in charge of the project, it's in good hands .
    14. That which is, or may be, held in a hand at once.
      1. ( gaming, chiefly card games ) The set of cards held by a player .
      2. ( tobacco manufacturing ) A bundle of tobacco leaves tied together .
      3. The collective noun for a bunch of bananas .
    15. Applause .
      Give him a hand .
    16. ( archaic ) Agency in transmission from one person to another .
      to buy at first hand ( from the producer, or when new )
      to buy at second hand ( when no longer in the producer’s hand, or when not new )
      It's not a rumor. I heard it at first hand .
    17. The feel of a fabric; the impression or quality of the fabric as judged qualitatively by the sense of touch .
      This fabric has a smooth, soft hand' .
    18. ( obsolete ) Rate; price.
    19. ( firearms ) The small part of a gunstock near the lock, which is grasped by the hand in taking aim .

    Synonyms

    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 .

    Meronyms

    See also

    Appendix:English collective nouns

    Verb

    hand ( third-person singular simple present hands present participle handing, simple past and past participle handed )

    1. ( transitive ) To give, pass, or transmit with the hand .
      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.
      • a. 1709, Matthew Prior, “The Lady's Looking-Glass”, in Poems on Several Occasions:
        I bless my chain; I hand my oar. / Nor think on all I left on shore .
    4. ( transitive, obsolete ) To seize; to lay hands on .
    5. ( transitive, rare ) To pledge by the hand; to handfast .
    6. ( transitive, nautical, said of a sail ) To furl .
    7. ( intransitive, obsolete ) To cooperate .

    Derived terms

    See also

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

    Statistics

    Anagrams

    • NADH

    Etymology

    Proto-Germanic *handuz

    Noun

    hand f .

    1. hand

    Declension

    Descendants

    • Middle English: hand


Explanation of hand by Wordnet Dictionary

hand


    Verb
    1. guide or conduct or usher somewhere

    2. hand the elderly lady into the taxi
    3. place into the hands or custody of

    4. hand me the spoon, please
    Noun
    1. physical assistance

    2. give me a hand with the chores
    3. terminal part of the forelimb in certain vertebrates ( e.g. apes or kangaroos )

    4. the kangaroo's forearms seem undeveloped but the powerful five-fingered hands are skilled at feinting and clouting- Springfield ( Mass. ) Union
    5. a rotating pointer on the face of a timepiece

    6. the big hand counts the minutes
    7. the ( prehensile ) extremity of the superior limb

    8. he had the hands of a surgeon
    9. ability

    10. he wanted to try his hand at singing
    11. one of two sides of an issue

    12. on the one hand..., but on the other hand...
    13. something written by hand

    14. she recognized his handwriting
      his hand was illegible
    15. a round of applause to signify approval

    16. give the little lady a great big hand
    17. the cards held in a card game by a given player at any given time

    18. I didn't hold a good hand all evening
      he kept trying to see my hand
    19. a position given by its location to the side of an object

    20. objections were voiced on every hand
    21. a card player in a game of bridge

    22. we need a 4th hand for bridge
    23. a member of the crew of a ship

    24. all hands on deck
    25. a hired laborer on a farm or ranch

    26. the hired hand fixed the railing
      a ranch hand
    27. a unit of length equal to 4 inches

    28. the horse stood 20 hands


    Definition of hand by GCIDE Dictionary

    hand


    1. Hand ( hănd ), n. [AS. hand, hond; akin to D., G., & Sw. hand, OHG. hant, Dan. haand, Icel. hönd, Goth. handus, and perh. to Goth. hinþan to seize ( in comp. ). Cf. Hunt.]
      1. 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.

      2. That which resembles, or to some extent performs the office of, a human hand; as: A limb of certain animals, as the foot of a hawk, or any one of the four extremities of a monkey. An index or pointer on a dial; as, “the hour or minute hand of a clock”.

      3. A measure equal to a hand's breadth, -- four inches; a palm. Chiefly used in measuring the height of horses.

      4. Side; part; direction, either right or left.

      On this hand and that hand, were hangings. Ex. xxxviii. 15.

      The Protestants were then on the winning hand. Milton.

      5. Power of performance; means of execution; ability; skill; dexterity.

      He had a great mind to try his hand at a Spectator. Addison.

      6. 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 vi. 36.

      7. An agent; a servant, or laborer; a workman, trained or competent for special service or duty; a performer more or less skillful; as, “a deck hand; a farm hand; 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. Shak.

      Some writs require a judge's hand. Burril.

      9. Personal possession; ownership; hence, control; direction; management; -- usually in the plural. “Receiving in hand one year's tribute.” Knolles.

      Albinus . . . found means to keep in his hands the government of Britain. Milton.

      10. 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”.

      11. Rate; price. [Obs.] “Business is bought at a dear hand, where there is small dispatch.” Bacon.

      12. That which is, or may be, held in a hand at once; as: ( Card Playing ) The quota of cards received from the dealer. ( Tobacco Manuf. ) A bundle of tobacco leaves tied together.

      13. ( Firearms ) The small part of a gunstock near the lock, which is grasped by the hand in taking aim.

      ☞ 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: Activity; operation; work; -- in distinction from the head, which implies thought, and the heart, which implies affection. “His hand will be against every man.” Gen. xvi. 12. Power; might; supremacy; -- often in the Scriptures. “With a mighty hand . . . will I rule over you.” Ezek. xx. 33. Fraternal feeling; as, “to give, or take, the hand; to give the right hand”. Contract; -- commonly of marriage; as, to ask the hand; to pledge the hand.

      ☞ Hand is often used adjectively or in compounds ( with or without the hyphen ), signifying performed by the hand; as, hand blow or hand-blow, hand gripe or hand-gripe: used by, or designed for, the hand; as, hand ball or handball, hand bow, hand fetter, hand grenade or hand-grenade, handgun or hand gun, handloom or hand loom, handmill or hand organ or handorgan, handsaw or hand saw, hand-weapon: measured or regulated by the hand; as, handbreadth or hand's breadth, hand gallop or hand-gallop. Most of the words in the following paragraph are written either as two words or in combination.

      Hand bag, a satchel; a small bag for carrying books, papers, parcels, etc. -- Hand basket, a small or portable basket. -- Hand bell, a small bell rung by the hand; a table bell. Bacon. -- Hand bill, a small pruning hook. See 4th Bill. -- Hand car. See under Car. -- Hand director ( Mus. ), an instrument to aid in forming a good position of the hands and arms when playing on the piano; a hand guide. -- Hand drop. See Wrist drop. -- Hand gallop. See under Gallop. -- Hand gear ( Mach. ), apparatus by means of which a machine, or parts of a machine, usually operated by other power, may be operated by hand. -- Hand glass. A glass or small glazed frame, for the protection of plants. A small mirror with a handle. -- Hand guide. Same as Hand director ( above ). -- Hand language, the art of conversing by the hands, esp. as practiced by the deaf and dumb; dactylology. -- Hand lathe. See under Lathe. -- Hand money, money paid in hand to bind a contract; earnest money. -- Hand organ ( Mus. ), a bHand ( hănd ), n.
    2. Hand ( hănd ), 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.

    3. Hand ( hănd ), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Handed; p. pr. & vb. n. Handing.]
      1. To give, pass, or transmit with the hand; as, “he handed them the letter”.

      2. To lead, guide, or assist with the hand; to conduct; as, “to hand a lady into a carriage”.

      3. To manage; as, “I hand my oar”. [Obs.] Prior.

      4. To seize; to lay hands on. [Obs.] Shak.

      5. To pledge by the hand; to handfast. [R.]

      6. ( Naut. ) To furl; -- said of a sail. Totten.

      To hand down, to transmit in succession, as from father to son, or from predecessor to successor; as, fables are handed down from age to age; to forward to the proper officer ( the decision of a higher court ); as, the Clerk of the Court of Appeals handed down its decision. -- To hand over, to yield control of; to surrender; to deliver up.

    4. Hand, v. i. To cooperate. [Obs.] Massinger.