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definition of the word hand

by the Wiktionnary

Rank of this word in the English language, from analyzing texts from Project Gutenberg.
though get eyes #151: hand young place give
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Hand

Wikipedia

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

Singular
hand

Plural
hands

hand (plural hands)

  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, especially card games): 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. (firearms) 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.

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.


Definition from Wiktionary
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