verb (used with object)

  1. to attach firmly or securely in place; fix securely to something else.
  2. to make secure, as an article of dress with buttons, clasps, etc., or a door with a lock, bolt, etc.
  3. to enclose securely, as a person or an animal (usually followed by in): to fasten a monkey in a cage.
  4. to attach, associate, or connect: to fasten a nickname on someone.
  5. to direct (the eyes, thoughts, etc.) intently: to fasten one’s eyes on a speaker.

verb (used without object)

  1. to become fast, fixed, or firm.
  2. to close firmly or securely; lock: This clasp won’t fasten.
  3. to take a firm hold; seize (usually followed by on or upon): to fasten on an idea.
  4. to focus attention; concentrate (usually followed by on or upon): His gaze fastened on the jewels.


  1. to make or become fast or secure
  2. to make or become attached or joined
  3. to close or become closed by fixing firmly in place, locking, etc
  4. (tr; foll by in or up) to enclose or imprison
  5. (tr usually foll by on) to cause (blame, a nickname, etc) to be attached (to); place (on) or impute (to)
  6. (usually foll by on or upon) to direct or be directed in a concentrated way; fixhe fastened his gaze on the girl
  7. (intr usually foll by on) take firm hold (of)

Old English f├Žstnian “make fast, firm,” also “ratify, betroth,” from Proto-Germanic *fastinojanan (cf. Old Frisian festnia “to make firm, bind fast,” Old Saxon fastnon, Old High German fastnion, Old Norse fastna “to pledge, betroth”), from *fastuz (see fast (adj.)). Related: Fastened; fastener; fastening.

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