American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Not fastened, restrained, or contained: loose bricks.
- adj. Not taut, fixed, or rigid: a loose anchor line; a loose chair leg.
- adj. Free from confinement or imprisonment; unfettered: criminals loose in the neighborhood; dogs that are loose on the streets.
- adj. Not tight-fitting or tightly fitted: loose shoes.
- adj. Not bound, bundled, stapled, or gathered together: loose papers.
- adj. Not compact or dense in arrangement or structure: loose gravel.
- adj. Lacking a sense of restraint or responsibility; idle: loose talk.
- adj. Not formal; relaxed: a loose atmosphere at the club.
- adj. Lacking conventional moral restraint in sexual behavior.
- adj. Not literal or exact: a loose translation.
- adj. Characterized by a free movement of fluids in the body: a loose cough; loose bowels.
- adv. In a loose manner.
- v. To let loose; release: loosed the dogs.
- v. To make loose; undo: loosed his belt.
- v. To cast loose; detach: hikers loosing their packs at camp.
- v. To let fly; discharge: loosed an arrow.
- v. To release pressure or obligation from; absolve: loosed her from the responsibility.
- v. To make less strict; relax: a leader's strong authority that was loosed by easy times.
- v. To become loose.
- v. To discharge a missile; fire.
- idiom. on the loose At large; free.
- idiom. on the loose Acting in an uninhibited fashion.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Not fast or confined; not fastened; unattached; free from restraint or obligation; not bound to another or together; without bonds, ties, or attachments; at liberty: as, loose sheets of a book; loose tresses of hair; loose change in one's pocket; to break loose; to be set loose; to cut loose from bad habits.
- Not tight or close; without close union or adjustment; slightly or slackly joined: as, a loose knot; loose garments; a loose league or confederation.
- Not dense or compact; having interstices or intervals; open or expanded: as, cloth of loose texture; a loose order of battle.
- Not concise or condensed; wanting precision or connection of parts; diffuse; rambling: as, a loose style of writing; loose reasoning; a loose array of facts.
- Not exact in meaning; indefinite; vague; uncertain.
- Lax; relaxed; slack; wanting retentiveness or power of restraint: as, loose bowels; loose ties; a loose bond of union.
- Lax in character or quality; not strict or exact; careless; slovenly: as, a loose construction of the constitution; a loose mode of conducting business; loose morality.
- Lax in principle or conduct; free from moral restraint; wanton; dissolute; unchaste: as, a loose woman; loose behavior.
- Disengaged; free; independent: with from or of.
- Seemingly communicative; frank; open; candid.
- n. Freedom from restraint; license.
- n. The act of letting go or letting fly; discharge; shot.
- n. A solution of a problem or explanation of a difficulty.
- n. The privilege of turning out cattle on commons.
- To make loose or free; release from that which restrains, confines, or hampers; set at liberty; disengage; discharge from constraint, obligation, or penalty.
- To disengage the hold of; undo; unfasten; untie.
- To relax; loosen; make or let loose, partially or wholly: as, to loose sail; to loose one's hold or grasp.
- To solve; explain.
- Synonyms To unfasten, let go, detach, disconnect, absolve, acquit.
- To perform the act of loosening; make or set loose something; let go a hold, unmoor a ship, shoot an arrow, or the like.
- In chem., not combined with anything else: as, carbon dioxid loose in the blood. The word free is more commonly used in this sense.
- In geology, incoherent, as unconsolidated sands.
- In coal-mining, free at the ends or sides: applied to a working-place when the coal has been previously mined on both sides: as, loose at one end, loose at one side, etc.
- n. In Rugby foot-ball, that part of the play in which the ball travels freely from player to player, as distinguished from the scrimmage.
- n. In mining, the end of a shift. Also loosing-time. When the workmen leave, the pit is said to be ‘loosed out.’
- n. In archery: The act of releasing the bow-string and discharging the arrow.
- n. The mode of performing this act, which differs among different peoples. In the primary or finger-and-thumb loose the arrow is grasped by the finger and thumb and pulled back against the string to draw the bow. The secondary and tertiary looses are similar, but the second and third fingers aid in pulling the bowstring. In the Mediterranean or finger-loose, in use by European archers, the arrow is held between the first and second fingers, and the string is pulled by the fingers, usually three, without the aid of the thumb. In the Mongolian loose the string is drawn by the thumb, usually by the aid of a drawing-ring. See
- In archery, to release (the bowstring) after the bow is drawn, thus discharging the arrow.
- v. common misspelling of lose.
- v. transitive To let loose, to free from restraints.
- v. transitive To unfasten, to loosen.
- v. transitive To make less tight, to loosen.
- v. intransitive Of a grip or hold, to let go.
- v. archery to shoot (an arrow)
- v. obsolete To set sail.
- adj. Not fixed in place tightly or firmly.
- adj. Not held or packaged together.
- adj. Not under control.
- adj. Not fitting closely
- adj. Not compact.
- adj. Relaxed.
- adj. Indiscreet.
- adj. dated Free from moral restraint; immoral, unchaste.
- adj. not comparable, sports Not being in the possession of any competing team during a game.
- n. archery The release of an arrow.
- n. obsolete A state of laxity or indulgence; unrestrained freedom, abandonment.
- interj. archery begin shooting; release your arrows
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. Unbound; untied; unsewed; not attached, fastened, fixed, or confined.
- adj. Free from constraint or obligation; not bound by duty, habit, etc.; -- with
from or of.
- adj. Not tight or close.
- adj. Not dense, close, compact, or crowded.
- adj. Not precise or exact; vague; indeterminate.
- adj. Not strict in matters of morality; not rigid according to some standard of right.
- adj. Unconnected; rambling.
- adj. Lax; not costive; having lax bowels.
- adj. Dissolute; unchaste.
- adj. Containing or consisting of obscene or unchaste language.
- n. obsolete Freedom from restraint.
- n. A letting go; discharge.
- v. To untie or unbind; to free from any fastening; to remove the shackles or fastenings of; to set free; to relieve.
- v. To release from anything obligatory or burdensome; to disengage; hence, to absolve; to remit.
- v. To relax; to loosen; to make less strict.
- v. obsolete To solve; to interpret.
- v. obsolete To set sail.
- adj. not tight; not closely constrained or constricted or constricting
- adj. not literal
- v. make loose or looser
- adj. emptying easily or excessively
- adj. not carefully arranged in a package
- adj. not officially recognized or controlled
- adj. (of textures) full of small openings or gaps
- v. grant freedom to; free from confinement
- adj. casual and unrestrained in sexual behavior
- adv. without restraint
- adj. (of a ball in sport) not in the possession or control of any player
- adj. lacking a sense of restraint or responsibility
- adj. having escaped, especially from confinement
- adj. not tense or taut
- v. turn loose or free from restraint
- v. become loose or looser or less tight
- adj. not compact or dense in structure or arrangement
- adj. not affixed
- Old Norse lauss (Wiktionary)
- Middle English louse, los, from Old Norse lauss. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“There were loose ends, but there always are; that's why you have the phrase loose ends.”
“I hate to use the word loose cannon, but he is," she said "It distresses me that Newt is pulling ahead, because I don't think he's electable at all.”
“(B) loose-slippings: never saw or heard it; the term loose chippings refers to gravel or crushed stone that has not yet been bonded into fresh asphalt in a road repair.”
“In Poland, he sought to convey lessons from those experiences to urge finance ministers from the 17-nation euro zone to speak with one voice and halt what he called "loose talk about dismantling the institutions of the euro.”
“Also Wednesday, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates warned against what he called "loose talk" about the ease of establishing a no-fly zone.”
“U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has decried what he called "loose talk" about establishing a no-fly zone in Libya, saying such an operation would require a military strike.”
“Between dodging the bullets of the gang members who are infuriated by Alex's most recent courtroom victory and keeping a rendezvous with a charming restaurateur, a serial killer on the loose is the last thing she needs on her plate right now.”
“Senator Nunn, you know a lot about what they call loose nukes out there.”
“The amount of the loose is according to the newspapers near a Million in US Dollars.”
“There is a fair amount of damage to landscaping and what I call loose-end (ph) damages, lost roof tiles, the ripped screens, damaged patio enclosures, and that time of thing.”
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