\ ˈhāst How to pronounce haste (audio) \

Definition of haste

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : rapidity of motion : swiftness out of breath from haste— Jane Austen We must make haste.
2 : rash or headlong action : precipitateness She sent the letter in haste and later regretted it. the beauty of speed uncontaminated by hasteHarper's
3 : undue eagerness to act In their haste to leave for the airport, they forgot their passports.


hasted; hasting

Definition of haste (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

archaic : to urge on : hasten with our fair entreaties haste them on— William Shakespeare haste thee, nymph, and bring with thee jest and youthful jollity— John Milton

intransitive verb

: to move or act swiftly these minutes even now hasting into eternity— Winston Churchill

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Choose the Right Synonym for haste


haste, hurry, speed, expedition, dispatch mean quickness in movement or action. haste applies to personal action and implies urgency and precipitancy and often rashness. marry in haste hurry often has a strong suggestion of agitated bustle or confusion. in the hurry of departure she forgot her toothbrush speed suggests swift efficiency in movement or action. exercises to increase your reading speed expedition and dispatch both imply speed and efficiency in handling affairs but expedition stresses ease or efficiency of performance and dispatch stresses promptness in concluding matters. the case came to trial with expedition paid bills with dispatch

Examples of haste in a Sentence

Noun The application had been approved with undue haste. made haste to get there on time
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun That can be interpreted as the Suns play fast, but are careless in their haste. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, "How pace, turnovers and youth can make or break Phoenix Suns in NBA restart," 8 July 2020 And journals are rushing to publish results, sometimes paying a price for their haste with retractions. Marilynn Marchione, Anchorage Daily News, "‘Desperation science’ is actually slowing the hunt for COVID-19 drug treatments," 8 July 2020 The coronavirus pandemic has forced courts around the globe to modernise with unprecedented haste. The Economist, "In camera Covid-19 forces courts to hold proceedings online," 14 June 2020 The decision was made in haste after a night of destruction and looting. Fox News, "Police union boycotts Philadelphia coffee shop that apologized for offering cops free lunch," 6 June 2020 Physicians leading the clinical trial for the drug, called remdesivir, say the fast-moving pandemic has compelled them to work with haste, all without compromising the scientific rigor necessary to prove whether the drug really works. NBC News, "Hard-hit LA County nursing homes will test asymptomatic residents for COVID-19," 23 Apr. 2020 Decisions to stay or go have been made under pressure, sometimes in haste. Benjamin Oreskes, Los Angeles Times, "Amid the coronavirus, should young adults move back in with mom and dad? Many are saying yes," 11 Apr. 2020 Many media outlets accepted whatever emails WikiLeaks published without pausing to verify every detail, and they weren’t punished for their haste. Franklin Foer, The Atlantic, "The 2016 Election Was Just a Dry Run," 11 May 2020 But in his haste to convince states to return to normal life, the President appears to be turning a blind eye to warnings that reopening too quickly -- and without the right precautions in place -- could leave more Americans dead. Eliza Mackintosh, CNN, "What you need to know about coronavirus on Friday, May 8," 8 May 2020

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

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First Known Use of haste


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for haste

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English hǣst violence

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Learn More about haste

Time Traveler for haste

Time Traveler

The first known use of haste was in the 14th century

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Statistics for haste

Last Updated

21 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Haste.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/haste. Accessed 4 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for haste


How to pronounce haste (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of haste

: speed of motion or action : quickness or eagerness that can result in mistakes


\ ˈhāst How to pronounce haste (audio) \

Kids Definition of haste

1 : quickness of motion or action : speed He left in haste.
2 : hasty action Haste makes waste.

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More from Merriam-Webster on haste

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for haste

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with haste

Spanish Central: Translation of haste

Nglish: Translation of haste for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of haste for Arabic Speakers

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