hand noun

1 part of the body

ADJ. left, right | beautiful, delicate, long-fingered, pretty | well-manicured | coarse, rough, work-reddened, work-roughened, work-worn | soft | firm, strong | limp He offered a limp hand to shake. | frail | arthritic | gnarled, knotted | claw-like | hairy | clammy He clutched the cane in his clammy hand. | cool His hand, when she shook it, was cool and firm. | dirty, filthy, greasy, grubby, sticky, sweaty, unwashed He wiped his greasy hands on the front of his overalls. | clean | gloved | ringed | ringless | open, outspread She gestured towards the window with an open hand. | outstretched She walked towards him with her hand outstretched to take his. | free With his free hand he took hold of the knife. | cupped She rested her chin in her cupped hand. | busy, deft Her busy hands had transformed the tiny room into a work of art. | willing There's plenty of work for willing hands | eager Eager hands reached out to help him. | nervous, shaking, trembling, unsteady | steady A surgeon needs a good eye and a steady hand. | friendly, sympathetic He put a friendly hand on his friend's knee. | generous, liberal (both figurative) She filled our glasses with a generous hand. | capable, expert, practised, skilful, skilled With a practised hand he motioned a waiter to bring a fresh pot of coffee. | careless, clumsy

VERB + HAND take She took the child's hand and helped him climb the steps. | hold, hold on to They walked along, holding hands. She held on to my hand as I tried to leave. | reach for He reached for her hand and held it tightly. | press, squeeze, touch She pressed his hand. ‘I know, ’ she said softly. | shake He shook Blake's hand as if they were long lost friends. He shook hands with all of us before leaving. | feel I felt a hand on my shoulder. | extend, hold out, put out, reach out She smiled and extended a hand in welcome. He put out a hand as if to touch her. | lay, place, press, put He laid a hand on her arm. She put her hands to her cheeks in embarrassment. | slide He slid his hands into his pockets. | withdraw Slowly Ruth withdrew her hand from his. | hold up, lift, put up, raise, throw up He lifted his hand to her face. Several students put up their hands to answer the question. She raised her hand in farewell. He threw up his hands in despair when he saw the damage. | spread She shrugged and spread her hands. ‘That's all I can tell you.’ | wave | clap We were all clapping our hands in time to the music. | clasp, clench, rub, wring He had his hands clasped behind his head. She clenched her hands in her lap to hide their trembling. He rubbed his hands together in satisfaction. He was sobbing and wringing his hands by the grave. | beat He beat his hands on the steering wheel in frustration. | cup I cupped my hand over the mouthpiece of the phone so they couldn't hear me. | wash | wipe

HAND + VERB shake, tremble Her hand shook as she lifted the glass to her lips. | reach out, shoot out A strong hand reached out and caught hold of her arm. | grope for sth, reach for sth, seek sth My hand groped for the door handle. His hand sought hers. | find sth His hand eventually found the light switch. | catch sth, clamp, clasp sth, close around/on/round sth, fasten around/on/round sth, grab sth, grasp sth, seize sth The policeman kept a firm hand clamped on his shoulder. | clutch sth, grip sth, hold sth | claw (at) sth, pull sth, tug sth His hands clawed at the muddy earth. | push sth | squeeze sth, tighten sth | brush (across/against) sth, caress sth, stroke sth, touch sth His hand brushed against hers. | creep, go, move, slide, slip, steal, stray Muriel's hand crept to her neck to hold her pearls. | fly Her hand flew to her mouth. ‘Oh no!’ | jerk, twitch | run over/through sth, trail Her hand ran over the surface, feeling the different textures. | freeze, still His hand froze in mid-gesture. | hover, waver My hand hovered over the switch for a moment. | lie, rest His hand rested on her shoulder. | go up, shoot up | come down, descend, drop A large hand descended on his shoulder. His hands dropped to his sides and he fell to the floor. | withdraw | lift, rise Her hand lifted to place a cigarette in her mouth. | cover sth Her hand moved to cover his.

HAND + NOUN gesture, movement, position, signal | dryer, towel | drill, saw (also handsaw), tools | pump | mirror | baggage, luggage You can take your laptop on the plane as hand luggage. | cream | delivery Mail for hand delivery is put in a separate tray. | grenade, gun (also handgun) | injury

PREP. by ~ Delicate clothes should be washed by hand. | by … ~s The rocks looked like they had been shaped by human hands. | in your ~ She had a piece of paper in her hand. (figurative) Can I leave these queries in your capable hands? | on your ~ She had large rings on both hands. | with your ~ Operate the gears with your left hand.

PHRASES fall into the wrong hands (figurative) Guards made sure that the food supplies didn't fall into the wrong hands. | get/keep/take your hands off sb/sth She warned her brother to keep his hands off her bag. | get/lay your hands on sth I desperately need to lay my hands on some money by Monday. | hand in hand They walked hand in hand along the path. | hands on hips She stood in the doorway, hands on hips. | in safe hands (figurative) He retired feeling confident that his company was in safe hands. | on (your) hands and knees He was on his hands and knees, looking for a contact lens. | out of sb's hands (figurative) I don't work in that department any more, so the problem is out of my hands. | the palm of your hand She studied the object in the palm of her hand. | run a hand/your hands over/through, etc. sth Clive ran a hand through his hair. | with your bare hands He killed the lion with his bare hands.

2 a hand: help

VERB + HAND give sb, lend (sb) Can you give me a hand with loading the van? At harvest time all the villagers lend a hand. | need Do you need a hand with those invoices?

3 role in a situation

VERB + HAND have | strengthen The strategic alliance served to strengthen the country's hand in the region.

PREP. ~ in Several of his colleagues had a hand in his downfall.

4 in card games

ADJ. bad, good

VERB + HAND deal (sb) Who dealt the last hand? (figurative) She felt that life had dealt her a bad hand. | get, have | play