[ heyst ]
/ heɪst /
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See synonyms for: haste / hasted / hasting on Thesaurus.com

Definition of haste

swiftness of motion; speed; celerity: He performed his task with great haste. They felt the need for haste.
urgent need of quick action; a hurry or rush: to be in haste to get ahead in the world.
unnecessarily quick action; thoughtless, rash, or undue speed: Haste makes waste.
verb (used with or without object), hast·ed, hast·ing.
Archaic. to hasten.
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Idioms about haste

    make haste, to act or go with speed; hurry: She made haste to tell the president the good news.

Origin of haste

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English, from Old French from Germanic; akin to Old Frisian hāste,Old English hæst “violence,” Old Norse heifst “hatred,” Gothic haifsts “quarrel”

synonym study for haste

1. See speed.


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What does haste mean?

Haste most commonly refers to urgency, such as in completing a task.

It can also be used as another word for speed or swiftness, as in We have to move with haste if we want to make it on time. The phrase make haste means to move quickly, hurry up, or rush.

Often, haste means urgency or speed that is careless or reckless. This is how the word is used in the expression haste makes waste, which means that rushing things leads to mistakes.

The adjective form hasty is most often used in this sense—a hasty decision is one that is thought to have been made too quickly, perhaps leading to negative consequences. The adverb form is hastily.

The verb hasten means to go faster or cause to go faster, as in We need to hasten our efforts.

Example: In my haste to finish the project, I forgot to put my name on it.

Where does haste come from?

The first records of the word haste come from the 1200s. It’s related to the Old English hæst, “violence,” the Old Norse heifst, “hatred,” the Gothic haifsts, “quarrel,” and the Old High German heisti, “powerful.”

Haste is most often used in a negative way, but not as negative as a word like hatred. Most of the time, haste implies that something was simply done too fast, leading to mistakes.

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What are some other forms related to haste?

  • hasty (adjective)
  • hastily (adverb)
  • hasteful (adjective)
  • hastefully (adverb)
  • hasten (verb)

What are some synonyms for haste?

What are some words that share a root or word element with haste

What are some words that often get used in discussing haste?

How is haste used in real life?

Haste is less commonly used than many of its synonyms, such as urgency.



Try using haste!

Which of the following words is NOT a synonym of haste?

A. speed
B. rapidity
C. thoroughness
D. urgency

How to use haste in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for haste

/ (heɪst) /

speed, esp in an action; swiftness; rapidity
the act of hurrying in a careless or rash manner
a necessity for hurrying; urgency
make haste to hurry; rush
a poetic word for hasten

Derived forms of haste

hasteful, adjectivehastefully, adverb

Word Origin for haste

C14: from Old French haste, of Germanic origin; compare Old Norse heifst hate, Old English hǣst strife, Old High German heisti powerful
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

Other Idioms and Phrases with haste


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.