follow Dictionary.com

Get the details behind our redesign

swift

[swift] /swɪft/
adjective, swifter, swiftest.
1.
moving or capable of moving with great speed or velocity; fleet; rapid:
a swift ship.
2.
coming, happening, or performed quickly or without delay:
a swift decision.
3.
quick or prompt to act or respond:
swift to jump to conclusions.
4.
Slang. quick to perceive or understand; smart; clever:
You can't cheat him, he's too swift.
adverb
5.
swiftly.
noun
6.
any of numerous long-winged, swallowlike birds of the family Apodidae, related to the hummingbirds and noted for their rapid flight.
9.
Also called swift moth, ghost moth. any of several brown or gray moths, the males of which are usually white, of the family Hepialidae, noted for rapid flight.
10.
an adjustable device upon which a hank of yarn is placed in order to wind off skeins or balls.
11.
the main cylinder on a machine for carding flax.
Origin
900
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 forms
swiftly, adverb
swiftness, noun
Can be confused
fast, quick, rapid, swift (see synonym study at quick)
Synonyms
1. speedy. See quick. 2. expeditious.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for swiftest

swift

/swɪft/
adjective
1.
moving or able to move quickly; fast
2.
occurring or performed quickly or suddenly; instant a swift response
3.
(postpositive) foll by to. prompt to act or respond swift to take revenge
adverb
4.
  1. swiftly or quickly
  2. (in combination) swift-moving
noun
5.
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
6.
(sometimes capital) a variety of domestic fancy pigeon originating in Egypt and Syria and having an appearance somewhat similar to a swift
7.
short for swift moth
8.
any of certain North American lizards of the genera Sceloporus and Uta that can run very rapidly: family Iguanidae (iguanas)
9.
the main cylinder in a carding machine
10.
an expanding circular frame used to hold skeins of silk, wool, etc
Derived Forms
swiftly, adverb
swiftness, noun
Word Origin
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

/swɪft/
noun
1.
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)
2.
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 Forms
Swiftian, 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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for swiftest
swift
O.E. swift "moving quickly," related to swifan "move in a course, sweep" (see swivel). The bird (several species of the family Cypselidæ, resembling swallows), noted for its "swift" flight, was so called from at least 1668. 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 (1530).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for swiftest

swift

adjective

Smart and clever; intelligent: Not too swift, is he


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for swift

All English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for swiftest

14
14
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with swiftest