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fasten Line breaks: fas¦ten
Pronunciation: /ˈfɑːs(ə)n/

Definition of fasten in English:


1 [with object] Close or do up securely: the tunic was fastened with a row of gilt buttons
More example sentences
  • She made sure his seatbelt was securely fastened before closing the door on him.
  • Lydia fastened the cloth door closed and took inventory of the room.
  • Once I had fastened the seatbelt and closed the door, Jason flicked a small switch on the dashboard, and the machine roared to life.
bolt, lock, secure, make secure, make fast, chain, seal
buckle, join, do up, connect, couple, close, unite, link;
lace (up), knot;
zip (up)
become closed, close, do up;
button (up), zip (up)
1.1 [no object, with adverbial] Be closed or done up in a particular manner: a blue nightie that fastens down the back
More example sentences
  • A blue plaque fastened into the wall publicises the office's past as the dining room in the home of journalist Henry Morton Stanley.
  • We drove home with a green boat perched atop a white wooden box of camping gear, fastened to a blue Volkswagen.
  • Chell's white wraparound skirt, reaching from beneath her arms to her ankles and fastened at the back, was pulled in by a blue sash around her waist.
1.2 [with object and adverbial] Fix or hold in place: she fastened her locket round her neck
More example sentences
  • She was fastening some of her hair up with glittery clips while the rest cascaded down her neck and back.
  • She was at the vanity, fastening her pale blonde hair into a bun that was already unraveling.
  • I made my way to the bathroom where I fished through piles of hair accessories until I found my giant clip with which I fastened my hair in a French twist.
1.3 (fasten something off) Secure the end of a thread with stitches or a knot: work the stitch and fasten off the thread
2 [no object] (fasten on/upon) Single out (someone or something) and concentrate on them or it obsessively: the critics fastened upon two sections of the report
More example sentences
  • It is true that the human imagination fastens on to single personalities, not casualty statistics.
  • With so many essays covering a diversity of themes and ideas, it is hard to fasten on a single idea as the central theme of the collection.
  • When you're doing a high-tech type of job, working under pressure against impossible time-scales, you tend to fasten on something silly and obsessive to ease the strain.
2.1 [with object] (fasten something on/upon) Direct one’s eyes, thoughts, etc. intently at: his gaze was fastened on his daughter [no object]: his eyes seemed to fasten on her
More example sentences
  • Realising that he wasn't getting any money from me, he began to glance away, and fastened his eyes on a wallet that a gentleman who passed us had in his hand.
  • What I did do, I noticed, was to keep a very beady eye on him from across the room: waiting to see what kind of man he fastened his attentions on this time.
  • He sat down carefully, and fastened his eyes on his glass desktop.
focus, fix, be riveted, concentrate, zero in, zoom in, be brought to bear;
direct at, aim at, point at


Old English fæstnian 'make sure', also 'immobilize', of West Germanic origin; related to fast1.



Example sentences
  • Steel or aluminum components are fabricated into sections using fasteners, locking rods, or welding.
  • Riveting is the joining of two metals by means of metal fasteners which mechanically lock them selves in position.
  • The exhibits included zips, fasteners, threads and yarn.

Words that rhyme with fasten

arson, Carson, parson, sarsen

Definition of fasten in:

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