Short a. [Compar. Shorter superl. Shortest.]
1. Not long; having brief length or linear extension; as, a short distance; a short piece of timber; a short flight.
The bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it. --Isa. xxviii. 20.
2. Not extended in time; having very limited duration; not protracted; as, short breath.
The life so short, the craft so long to learn. --Chaucer.
To short absense I could yield. --Milton.
3. Limited in quantity; inadequate; insufficient; scanty; as, a short supply of provisions, or of water.
4. Insufficiently provided; inadequately supplied; scantily furnished; lacking; not coming up to a resonable, or the ordinary, standard; -- usually with of; as, to be short of money.
We shall be short in our provision. --Shak.
5. Deficient; defective; imperfect; not coming up, as to a measure or standard; as, an account which is short of the trith.
6. Not distant in time; near at hand.
Marinell was sore offended
That his departure thence should be so short. --Spenser.
He commanded those who were appointed to attend him to be ready by a short day. --Clarendon.
7. Limited in intellectual power or grasp; not comprehensive; narrow; not tenacious, as memory.
Their own short understandings reach
No farther than the present. --Rowe.
8. Less important, efficaceous, or powerful; not equal or equivalent; less (than); -- with of.
Hardly anything short of an invasion could rouse them again to war. --Landor.
9. Abrupt; brief; pointed; petulant; as, he gave a short answer to the question.
10. Cookery Breaking or crumbling readily in the mouth; crisp; as, short pastry.
11. Metal Brittle.
Note: ☞ Metals that are brittle when hot are called ░ot-short; as, cast iron may be hot-short, owing to the presence of sulphur. Those that are brittle when cold are called cold-short; as, cast iron may be cold-short, on account of the presence of phosphorus.
12. Stock Exchange Engaging or engaged to deliver what is not possessed; as, short contracts; to be short of stock. See The shorts, under Short, n., and To sell short, under Short, adv.
Note: ☞ In mercantile transactions, a note or bill is sometimes made payable at short sight, that is, in a little time after being presented to the payer.
13. Phon. Not prolonged, or relatively less prolonged, in utterance; -- opposed to long, and applied to vowels or to syllables. In English, the long and short of the same letter are not, in most cases, the long and short of the same sound; thus, the i in ill is the short sound, not of i in isle, but of ee in eel, and the e in pet is the short sound of a in pate, etc. See Quantity, and Guide to Pronunciation, §§22, 30.
Note: ☞ Short is much used with participles to form numerous self-explaining compounds; as, short-armed, short-billed, short-fingered, short-haired, short-necked, short-sleeved, short-tailed, short-winged, short-wooled, etc.
At short notice, in a brief time; promptly.
Short rib Anat., one of the false ribs.
Short suit Whist, any suit having only three cards, or less than three. --R. A. Proctor.
To come short, To cut short, To fall short, etc. See under Come, Cut, etc.
1. A summary account.
The short and the long is, our play is preferred. --Shak.
2. pl. The part of milled grain sifted out which is next finer than the bran.
The first remove above bran is shorts. --Halliwell.
3. pl. Short, inferior hemp.
4. pl. Breeches; shortclothes. [Slang]
5. Phonetics A short sound, syllable, or vowel.
If we compare the nearest conventional shorts and longs in English, as in =\“bit” and “beat,” “not” and “naught,” we find that the short vowels are generally wide, the long narrow, besides being generally diphthongic as well. Hence, originally short vowels can be lengthened and yet kept quite distinct from the original longs.\= --H. Sweet.
In short, in few words; in brief; briefly.
The long and the short, the whole; a brief summing up.
The shorts Stock Exchange, those who are unsupplied with stocks which they contracted to deliver.
Short adv. In a short manner; briefly; limitedly; abruptly; quickly; as, to stop short in one's course; to turn short.
He was taken up very short, and adjudged corrigible for such presumptuous language. --Howell.
To sell short Stock Exchange, to sell, for future delivery, what the party selling does not own, but hopes to buy at a lower rate.
Short, v. t. To shorten. [Obs.]
Short, v. i. To fail; to decrease. [Obs.]
adj 1: primarily temporal sense; indicating or being or seeming to
be limited in duration; "a short life"; "a short
flight"; "a short holiday"; "a short story"; "only a
few short months" [ant: long]
2: primarily spatial sense; having little length or lacking in
length; "short skirts"; "short hair"; "the board was a
foot short"; "a short toss" [ant: long]
3: low in stature; not tall; "his was short and stocky"; "short
in stature"; "a short smokestack" [ant: tall]
4: not sufficient to meet a need; "an inadequate income"; "a
poor salary"; "money is short"; "on short rations"; "food
is in short supply"; "short on experience" [syn: inadequate,
5: not holding securities or commodities that one sells in
expectation of a fall in prices; "a short sale"; "short in
cotton" [ant: long]
6: of speech sounds (especially vowels) of relatively short
duration (as e.g. the English vowel sounds in `pat',
`pet', `pit', `pot', putt') [ant: long]
7: containing a large amount of shortening; therefore tender
and easy to crumble or break into flakes; "shortbread is a
short crumbly cookie"; "a short flaky pie crust"
8: less than the correct or legal or full amount often
deliberately so; "a light pound"; "a scant cup of sugar";
"regularly gives short weight" [syn: light, scant(p)]
9: used of syllables that are unaccented or of relatively brief
10: (of memory) deficient in retentiveness or range; "a short
11: lacking foresight or scope; "a short view of the problem";
"shortsighted policies"; "shortsighted critics derided
the plan"; "myopic thinking" [syn: shortsighted, unforesightful,
12: unwilling to endure; "she was short with the slower
students" [syn: unforbearing]
13: quickly aroused to anger; "a hotheaded commander" [syn: choleric,
irascible, hotheaded, hot-tempered, quick-tempered,
14: most direct; "took the shortest and most direct route to
town" [syn: shortest]
15: marked by rude or peremptory shortness; "try to cultivate a
less brusque manner"; "a curt reply"; "the salesgirl was
very short with him" [syn: brusque, brusk, curt, short(p)]
n 1: the location on a baseball field where the shortstop is
2: accidental contact between two points in an electric circuit
that have a potential difference [syn: short circuit]
3: the fielding position of the player on a baseball team who
is stationed between 2nd and 3rd base [syn: shortstop]
adv 1: quickly and without warning; "he stopped suddenly" [syn: abruptly,
2: without possessing something at the time it is contractually
sold; "he made his fortune by selling short just before
3: clean across; "the car's axle snapped short"
4: at some point or distance before a goal is reached; "he fell
short of our expectations"
5: so as to interrupt; "She took him up short before he could
6: at a disadvantage; "I was caught short" [syn: unawares]
7: tightly; "she caught him up short on his lapel"
8: in a curt, abrupt and discourteous manner; "he told me
curtly to get on with it"; "he talked short with
everyone"; "he said shortly that he didn't like it" [syn:
v 1: cheat someone by not returning him enough money [syn: short-change]
2: create a short-circuit in [syn: short-circuit]