verb (used with object)
- to attach firmly or securely in place; fix securely to something else.
- to make secure, as an article of dress with buttons, clasps, etc., or a door with a lock, bolt, etc.
- to enclose securely, as a person or an animal (usually followed by in): to fasten a monkey in a cage.
- to attach, associate, or connect: to fasten a nickname on someone.
- to direct (the eyes, thoughts, etc.) intently: to fasten one’s eyes on a speaker.
verb (used without object)
- to become fast, fixed, or firm.
- to close firmly or securely; lock: This clasp won’t fasten.
- to take a firm hold; seize (usually followed by on or upon): to fasten on an idea.
- to focus attention; concentrate (usually followed by on or upon): His gaze fastened on the jewels.
- to make or become fast or secure
- to make or become attached or joined
- to close or become closed by fixing firmly in place, locking, etc
- (tr; foll by in or up) to enclose or imprison
- (tr usually foll by on) to cause (blame, a nickname, etc) to be attached (to); place (on) or impute (to)
- (usually foll by on or upon) to direct or be directed in a concentrated way; fixhe fastened his gaze on the girl
- (intr usually foll by on) take firm hold (of)
Old English fæstnian “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.