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Line breaks: swift
Pronunciation: /swɪft

Definition of swift in English:


1Happening quickly or promptly: a remarkably swift recovery
More example sentences
  • Her eyes quickly made a swift sweep of the people in the room.
  • With his domestic problems and this illness, we all pray for a swift recovery.
  • If Myles is reading this, hope the op went well and wish a swift recovery, looking forward to getting you back on the golf course
prompt, rapid, sudden, immediate, instant, instantaneous, without delay, ready, punctual;
abrupt, unhesitating, hasty, hurried, precipitate, headlong
informal spanking, nippy
1.1Moving or capable of moving at high speed: the water was very swift the swiftest horse in his stable
More example sentences
  • The beast is replaced with a thin, swift reptile that is capable taking sharp corners and hiding inside buildings.
  • White and pale camels are much preferred by the men as mounts, especially those which are swift moving, sleek and pleasant to the eye.
  • As one would expect, this is a very swift car, well capable of getting to 60 mph in less than six seconds and with a top speed beyond 150 mph.
literary winged, flying
informal nippy, supersonic


literary except in combination Back to top  
Swiftly: streams which ran swift and very clear a swift-acting poison


Back to top  
1A swift-flying insectivorous bird with long, slender wings and a superficial resemblance to a swallow, spending most of its life on the wing.
Example sentences
  • The White-throated Swift is a large, slender swift with long wings and a narrow tail, usually held closed into a point.
  • Data gathered on the acceleration of swifts and swallows illustrate another compromise: Birds with low wing loading and high aspect ratio suffer from lower acceleration performance.
  • Swallows, swifts and nighthawks, all pursuing flying insects, fly erratically.
2 (also swift moth) A moth, typically yellow-brown in colour, with fast darting flight. The eggs are scattered in flight and the larvae live underground feeding on roots, where they can be a serious pest.
  • Family Hepialidae: Hepialus and other genera
3A light, adjustable reel for holding a skein of silk or wool.
Example sentences
  • Illustrated in the book are other articles made in the Dominy shop for family use, such as a wooden bowl made of a burl from an apple tree and a swift to wind wool yarn.


Old English (as an adjective), from the Germanic base of Old English swīfan 'move in a course, sweep'. The bird name dates from the mid 17th century.



Example sentences
  • Now my first instinct was to declare it immediately cool and pass swiftly on.
  • She immediately and swiftly reached her own house, using her copy of the key to get into the house.
  • He leaned against a pillar until the line had cleared and swiftly strode to the guard.
promptly, immediately, instantly, instantaneously, without delay, post-haste, in a flash, in a trice, in the wink of an eye, in an instant, in no time (at all);
readily, punctually, meteorically;
rapidly, quickly, fast, speedily, briskly, at high speed, at full tilt, like the wind, like lightning, at breakneck speed, as fast as one's legs can carry one, as swift as an arrow
literary apace


Example sentences
  • There has been an impressive swiftness in the way certain clubs are showing themselves willing to invest in home-grown personnel.
  • The reaction to Wayne's comments came with the usual swiftness one might expect in today's atmosphere of political correctness.
  • More than the skill, it was the attitude and swiftness with which the students carried themselves, that dominated the show.

Definition of swift in:

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