\ 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 Their terms had already expired, but Vizcarra and others, including the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, have criticized lawmakers for the haste and lack of transparency in which the candidates have been selected. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Peru leader pushes vote that could let him dissolve congress," 27 Sep. 2019 Other than a rising stock market, a simple technical reason may account for the brewer’s haste to try again. Washington Post, "Hong Kong IPOs Rush to Beat the Clock," 16 Sep. 2019 But the very news that cholera was moving westward across the globe had already prompted New Yorkers, or at least those who could afford it, to leave the city in haste. Elena Conis, Time, "What History’s Economy-Disrupting Outbreaks Can Teach Us About Coronavirus Panic," 9 Mar. 2020 Amid the haste to spend, U.S. agencies wasted large sums of money on ghost projects that never took shape. Craig Whitlock, Anchorage Daily News, "Officials reveal how massive rebuilding projects in Afghanistan failed," 9 Dec. 2019 They were angered over the seeming haste to award the contracts, as well as the administration's attempt to bypass a legislative committee that's supposed to review them. Deborah Yetter, The Courier-Journal, "Lawmakers rip last-minute, $8 billion Medicaid contract awarded by Bevin administration," 9 Dec. 2019 In the haste to erase the influence of the East, the West tears down the barrier along with buildings and monuments that signified the regime. The wall becomes a ghost, haunting only memory. Tessa Love, Longreads, "California Burning," 8 Nov. 2019 After the initial shock of our positive pregnancy test wore off, my husband scheduled an April vasectomy with the haste of a man who’d had his fill of consoling croupy infants at 3 A.M. Dara T. Mathis, SELF, "We Need to Stop Acting Like Vasectomies Are Heroic," 29 Aug. 2019 The lawsuit alleges that the two men left in such haste that Graham left behind a loaded gun in violation of FAA policy. Melissa Yeager, azcentral, "Southwest Airlines flight attendant tells why she sued: 'This was not a joke'," 1 Nov. 2019

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

6 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Haste.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/haste. Accessed 6 Apr. 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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