Meaning of HAND in English


/ hænd; NAmE / noun , verb

■ noun



[ C ] the part of the body at the end of the arm, including the fingers and thumb :

Ian placed a hand on her shoulder.

Put your hand up if you know the answer.

Keep both hands on the steering wheel at all times.

She was on (her) hands and knees (= crawling on the floor) looking for an earring.

Couples strolled past holding hands .

Give me your hand (= hold my hand) while we cross the road.

The crowd threw up their hands (= lifted them into the air) in dismay.

He killed the snake with his bare hands (= using only his hands) .

a hand towel (= a small towel for drying your hands on)

a hand drill (= one that is used by turning a handle rather than powered by electricity)

—see also left-hand , right-hand



(in adjectives) using the hand or number of hands mentioned :

a one-handed catch

left-handed scissors (= intended to be held in your left hand)



a hand [ sing. ] ( informal ) help in doing sth :

Let me give you a hand with those bags (= help you to carry them) .

Do you need a hand with those invoices?

The neighbours are always willing to lend a hand .



[ sing. ] hand in sth the part or role that sb/sth plays in a particular situation; sb's influence in a situation :

Early reports suggest the hand of rebel forces in the bombings.

Several of his colleagues had a hand in his downfall.

This appointment was an attempt to strengthen her hand in policy discussions.



[ C ] (usually in compounds) a part of a clock or watch that points to the numbers

—picture at watch

—see also hour hand , minute hand , second hand



[ C ] a person who does physical work on a farm or in a factory

—see also chargehand , farmhand , hired hand , stagehand



[ C ] a sailor on a ship :

All hands on deck!

—see also deckhand



(in compounds) by a person rather than a machine :

hand-painted pottery


This item should be hand washed.

—see also handmade



[ C ] a set of playing cards given to one player in a game :

to be dealt a good / bad hand


[ C ] one stage of a game of cards :

I'll have to leave after this hand.



[ sing. ] ( old use ) a particular style of writing

—see also freehand



[ C ] a unit for measuring the height of a horse, equal to 4 inches or 10.16 centimetres

—see also dab hand , old hand , second-hand , underhand


- all hands on deck

- (close / near) at hand

- at the hands of sb | at sb's hands

- be good with your hands

- bind / tie sb hand and foot

- by hand

- fall into sb's hands / the hands of sb

- (at) first hand

- get your hands dirty

- sb's hand (in marriage)

- hand in glove (with sb)

- hand in hand

- (get / take your) hands off (sth/sb)

- hands up!

- have your hands full

- have your hands tied

- hold sb's hand

- in sb's capable, safe, etc. hands

- in hand

- in the hands of sb | in sb's hands

- keep your hand in

- lay / get your hands on sb

- lay / get your hands on sth

- many hands make light work

- not do a hand's turn

- off your hands

- on either / every hand

- on hand

- on your hands

- on the one hand ... on the other (hand) ...

- out of hand

- out of your hands

- play into sb's hands

- put your hand in your pocket

- (at) second, third, etc. hand

- take sb in hand

- take sth into your own hands

- throw your hand in

- to hand

- turn your hand to sth

—more at big adjective , bird , bite verb , blood noun , cap noun , cash noun , change verb , close (II) adverb , courage , dead adjective , devil , eat , firm adjective , fold verb , force verb , free adjective , hat , heavy , help verb , iron adjective , join verb , know verb , law , life , lift verb , live (I), money , offer verb , overplay , pair noun , palm noun , putty , raise verb , safe adjective , show noun , show verb , sleight , stay verb , time noun , try verb , upper adjective , wait verb , wash verb , whip noun , win verb , wring

■ verb

hand sth to sb | hand sb sth to pass or give sth to sb :

[ vn , vnn ]

She handed the letter to me.

She handed me the letter.


- hand sth to sb on a plate

- have (got) to hand it to sb


- hand sth around / round

- hand sth back (to sb)

- hand sth down (to sb)

- hand sth in (to sb)

- hand sb off

- hand sth on (to sb)

- hand sth out (to sb)

- hand sth over (to sb) | hand over (to sb) | hand sth over (to sb)

- hand sb over to sb

- hand sb/sth over (to sb)



using your hands


These verbs describe different ways of touching things:

| feel |

I felt the bag to see what was in it.


| finger |

She fingered the silk delicately.


| handle |

Handle the fruit with care.


| rub |

She rubbed her eyes wearily.


| stroke |

The cat loves being stroked.


| pat |

He patted my arm and told me not to worry.


| tap |

Someone was tapping lightly at the door.


| squeeze |

I took his hand and squeezed it.



You can use these verbs to describe taking something quickly:

| grab |

I grabbed his arm to stop myself from falling.


| snatch |

She snatched the letter out of my hand.


These verbs describe holding things tightly:

| clasp |

Her hands were clasped behind her head.


| clutch |

The child was clutching a doll in her hand.


| grasp |

Grasp the rope with both hands and pull.


| grip |

He gripped his bag tightly and wouldn't let go.




Old English hand , hond , of Germanic origin; related to Dutch hand and German Hand .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.