swift

[swift]

adjective, swift·er, swift·est.

adverb

swiftly.

noun


Origin of swift

before 900; Middle English (adj. and adv.), Old English (adj.); akin to Old English swīfan to revolve, Old Norse svīfa to rove; see swivel
Related formsswift·ly, adverbswift·ness, noun
Can be confusedfast quick rapid swift (see synonym study at quick)

Synonyms for swift

1. speedy. See quick. 2. expeditious.

Swift

[swift]

noun

Gustavus Franklin,1839–1903, U.S. meat packer.
JonathanIsaac Bickerstaff, 1667–1745, English satirist and clergyman, born in Ireland.

SWIFT

[swift]

noun

Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication: an international consortium that routes instructions concerning transfer of funds between financial institutions.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for swift

Contemporary Examples of swift

Historical Examples of swift

  • One swift glance had shown him there was no way of instant retreat.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Then there was a current of curses, a swift hissing of invective.

  • By the way, what inducements could a swift writer as he have to learn short-hand!

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • This feeling was intensified by the belief that Swift, as a clergyman, was insincere.

  • Again, Aggie studied him with a swift glance of interrogation.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana


British Dictionary definitions for swift

swift

adjective

moving or able to move quickly; fast
occurring or performed quickly or suddenly; instanta swift response
(postpositive foll by to) prompt to act or respondswift to take revenge

adverb

  1. swiftly or quickly
  2. (in combination)swift-moving

noun

any bird of the families Apodidae and Hemiprocnidae, such as Apus apus (common swift) of the Old World: order Apodiformes. They have long narrow wings and spend most of the time on the wing
(sometimes capital) a variety of domestic fancy pigeon originating in Egypt and Syria and having an appearance somewhat similar to a swift
short for swift moth
any of certain North American lizards of the genera Sceloporus and Uta that can run very rapidly: family Iguanidae (iguanas)
the main cylinder in a carding machine
an expanding circular frame used to hold skeins of silk, wool, etc
Derived Formsswiftly, adverbswiftness, noun

Word Origin for swift

Old English, from swīfan to turn; related to Old Norse svifa to rove, Old Frisian swīvia to waver, Old High German sweib a reversal; see swivel

Swift

noun

Graham Colin. born 1949, English writer: his novels include Waterland (1983), Last Orders (1996), which won the Booker prize, and The Light of Day (2002)
Jonathan. 1667–1745, Anglo-Irish satirist and churchman, who became dean of St Patrick's, Dublin, in 1713. His works include A Tale of a Tub (1704) and Gulliver's Travels (1726)
Derived FormsSwiftian, adjective
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 swift
adj.

Old English swift "moving quickly," related to swifan "move in a course, sweep" (see swivel). Related: Swiftly; swiftness.

n.

type of bird (several species of the family Cypselidæ, resembling swallows), 1660s, from swift (adj.) in reference to its swift flight. Regarded as a bird of ill-omen, if not downright demonic, probably for its shrill cry. The name earlier had been given to several small fast lizards (1520s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper