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[vast, vahst] /væst, vɑst/
adjective, vaster, vastest.
of very great area or extent; immense:
the vast reaches of outer space.
of very great size or proportions; huge; enormous:
vast piles of rubble left in the wake of the war.
very great in number, quantity, amount, etc.:
vast sums of money.
very great in degree, intensity, etc.:
an artisan of vast skill.
Literary. an immense or boundless expanse or space.
Origin of vast
1565-75; < Latin vastus empty, immense
Related forms
vastly, adverb
vastness, noun
supervast, adjective
supervastly, adverb
supervastness, noun
1. measureless, boundless, gigantic, colossal, stupendous.
1. small. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for vastly
  • But a bird wing is vastly more sophisticated than anything composed of sheet metal and rivets.
  • The population needs a better and safer place to live in even though the lands are vastly populated with people.
  • Or if it arrives at the same time but my dish is vastly the wrong temperature.
  • In both directions, this short, sharp clash was vastly exaggerated.
  • Wright was vastly prolific, and the curators wisely decided to concentrate on key projects rather than show everything.
  • Career colleges and community colleges have vastly different missions.
  • We live in an era when expectations are vastly increased for, and financial necessities demand, the high retention of students.
  • If you can do that, it would vastly increase your chances at getting a faculty job.
  • So, going away to college has vastly different meaning.
  • We spend vastly more than any other country on health care, and increasingly our health is our wealth.
British Dictionary definitions for vastly


unusually large in size, extent, degree, or number; immense
(prenominal) (intensifier): in vast haste
(mainly poetic) the vast, immense or boundless space
(Brit, dialect) a very great amount or number
Derived Forms
vastity, noun
vastly, adverb
vastness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin vastus deserted
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
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Word Origin and History for vastly



1570s, from Middle French vaste, from Latin vastus "immense, extensive, huge," also "desolate, unoccupied, empty." The two meanings probably originally attached to two separate words, one with a long -a- one with a short -a-, that merged in early Latin (see waste). Very popular early 18c. as an intensifier. Related: Vastly; vastness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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