verb fas·ten \ ˈfa-sᵊn \
|Updated on: 11 Aug 2018

Definition of fasten

fastened; fastening play \ˈfas-niŋ, ˈfa-sᵊn-iŋ\
1 a : to attach especially by pinning, tying, or nailing
b : to make fast and secure
c : to fix firmly or securely
d : to secure against opening
2 : to fix or set steadily
  • fastened her attention on the main problem
3 : to take a firm grip with
  • the dog fastened its teeth in the shoe
4 a : to attach (oneself) persistently and usually objectionably
b : to place forcefully : impose
  • fastened the blame on the wrong person
1 : to become fast or fixed
2 a : to take a firm grip or hold
b : to focus attention


play \ˈfas-nər, ˈfa-sᵊn-ər\ noun

Examples of fasten in a Sentence

  1. fastening clothes on a clothesline

  2. He fastened the dog's leash to a post and went into the store.

  3. two boards fastened together by nails

  4. a decorative clasp that could be used to fasten a cape or cloak

  5. a shoe that fastens with a buckle

  6. This dress fastens in the back.

  7. She twisted her hair into a bun and fastened it with bobby pins.

  8. Make sure the lid is tightly fastened.

  9. The lock was so damaged it wouldn't fasten.

  10. He fastened his hands on my arm and wouldn't let go.

Recent Examples of fasten from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fasten.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of fasten

Middle English fastnen, from Old English fæstnian to make fast; akin to Old High German festinōn to make fast, Old English fæst fast

Synonym Discussion of fasten

fasten, fix, attach, affix mean to make something stay firmly in place. fasten implies an action such as tying, buttoning, nailing, locking, or otherwise securing.
    • fasten the reins to a post
fix usually implies a driving in, implanting, or embedding.
    • fixed the stake in the ground
attach suggests a connecting or uniting by a bond, link, or tie in order to keep things together.
    • attach the W-2 form here
affix implies an imposing of one thing on another by gluing, impressing, or nailing.
    • affix your address label here

FASTEN Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of fasten for English Language Learners

  • : to attach (something) or join (two things or two parts of something) especially by using a pin, nail, etc.

  • of parts of something : to become attached or joined

  • : to put something in a position or location in such a way that it will not move

FASTEN Defined for Kids


verb fas·ten \ ˈfa-sᵊn \

Definition of fasten for Students

fastened; fastening
1 : to attach or join by or as if by pinning, tying, or nailing
  • She fastened the papers together.
2 : to make firm and secure
  • Fasten your seat belt.
3 : to become fixed or joined
  • The dress fastens in the back.



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