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vast

[vast, vahst] /væst, vɑst/
adjective, vaster, vastest.
1.
of very great area or extent; immense:
the vast reaches of outer space.
2.
of very great size or proportions; huge; enormous:
vast piles of rubble left in the wake of the war.
3.
very great in number, quantity, amount, etc.:
vast sums of money.
4.
very great in degree, intensity, etc.:
an artisan of vast skill.
noun
5.
Literary. an immense or boundless expanse or space.
Origin of vast
1565-1575
1565-75; < Latin vastus empty, immense
Related forms
vastly, adverb
vastness, noun
supervast, adjective
supervastly, adverb
supervastness, noun
Synonyms
1. measureless, boundless, gigantic, colossal, stupendous.
Antonyms
1. small.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for vastness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The evil seems too great for him, and its vastness crushes him.

  • She evinced boundless faith in the vastness of Maurice's intellect.

    Fruitfulness Emile Zola
  • Then it was possible to obtain a bird's-eye view of the whole cut, and to appreciate its vastness.

    The Hero of Panama F. S. Brereton
  • The vastness of the antique press seemed brightened and all refreshed by them.

    Doctor Pascal Emile Zola
  • The huge oaken banquet hall, lined with rich hangings, shrunk us to dwarfs by its vastness.

    Humorous Ghost Stories Dorothy Scarborough
  • A conception—a reality here—that was numbing in its vastness.

    The World Beyond Raymond King Cummings
British Dictionary definitions for vastness

vast

/vɑːst/
adjective
1.
unusually large in size, extent, degree, or number; immense
2.
(prenominal) (intensifier): in vast haste
noun
3.
(mainly poetic) the vast, immense or boundless space
4.
(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 vastness

vast

adj.

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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