off-hand


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off-hand

- Meaning "at once, straightway," it probably originally referred to shooting without a rest or support; as "unpremeditated," it is attested to 1719.
See also related terms for shooting.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adv.1.off-hand - without preparation; "I don't know the figures off-hand"
References in classic literature ?
Obviously they were questions not to be answered off-hand.
Fellows who have rascally faces have only one course to take, and that is to remain honest; otherwise they would be arrested off-hand.
I asked Spider, in an off-hand way, what was eating French Frank.
Perfect, he, as a lover, might have called them off-hand.
He talked to Philip in a pleasant, off-hand fashion.
We had to go to our work, but Paddy was not to be buried in any such off-hand fashion as that.
There was something so very agreeable in being so intimate with such a waistcoat; in being called Tom, in such an intimate way, by such a voice; in being on such off-hand terms so soon, with such a pair of whiskers; that Tom was uncommonly pleased with himself.
Likewise I knew that, up to the time of my journey to Paris, she and the Frenchman had been more ceremonious towards our party--they had stood on a much more precise and delicate footing with them; but that now their acquaintanceship--their friendship, their intimacy--had taken on a much more off-hand and rough-and-ready air.
Shirking and sharking in all their many varieties have been sown broadcast by the ill-fated cause; and even those who have contemplated its history from the outermost circle of such evil have been insensibly tempted into a loose way of letting bad things alone to take their own bad course, and a loose belief that if the world go wrong it was in some off-hand manner never meant to go right.
It is a good tune--you can't improve it any, just off-hand, in this way.
Oh," laughed the priest, "because he whose power and mien be even more kingly than the King's would rightly grace the royal palace," but he had not failed to note the perturbation his remark had caused, nor did his off-hand reply entirely deceive the old man.
The nurse, in her evidence, had reported him as speaking in an off-hand manner.