[haf-ast, hahf-]
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adjective Slang: Vulgar.
  1. insufficient or haphazard; not fully planned or developed.
  2. incompetent; lacking sufficient ability or knowledge.

Origin of half-assed

First recorded in 1960–65; half + ass2 + -ed3
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for half-assed

Contemporary Examples of half-assed

Historical Examples of half-assed

  • I didn't do it, and I can beat any case that half-assed ex-ambulance-chaser, Farnsworth, could dream up against me.

    Murder in the Gunroom

    Henry Beam Piper

British Dictionary definitions for half-assed


adjective US and Canadian slang
  1. incompetent; inept
  2. lacking efficiency or organization
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for half-assed

"ineffectual," 1932, perhaps a humorous mispronunciation of haphazard.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper