What does swift mean?

Definitions for swift

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word swift.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. Swift, Gustavus Franklin Swiftnoun

    United States meat-packer who began the use of refrigerated railroad cars (1839-1903)

  2. Swift, Jonathan Swift, Dean Swiftnoun

    an English satirist born in Ireland (1667-1745)

  3. swiftnoun

    a small bird that resembles a swallow and is noted for its rapid flight

  4. western fence lizard, swift, blue-belly, Sceloporus occidentalisadjective

    common western lizard; seen on logs or rocks

  5. fleet, swiftadjective

    moving very fast

    "fleet of foot"; "the fleet scurrying of squirrels"; "a swift current"; "swift flight of an arrow"; "a swift runner"


  1. swiftnoun

    The current of a stream.

  2. swiftnoun

    A small plain-colored bird (of the family Micropodidæ) that resembles a swallow and is noted for its rapid flight. Common European swift: Cypselus, Micropus, apus. The common American, or chimney, swift: Chætura pelagica. The Australian swift: Chætura caudacuta. The European Alpine swift: Cypselus melba. The common Indian swift: Cypselus affinis.

  3. swiftnoun

    A western fence lizard, swift, blue-belly, Sceloporus occidentalis -- (common western lizard; seen on logs or rocks)

  4. swiftnoun

    The ghost moth.

  5. swiftadjective

    fast; quick; rapid.

  6. swiftadjective

    Capable of moving at high speeds.

  7. Swiftnoun

    A surname, originally a nickname for a swift or quick person.

  8. Swiftnoun

    A general-purpose multi-paradigm compiled programming language introduced by Apple Inc. in 2014.

    If anyone outside Apple saw Swift coming, they certainly weren't making any public predictions.

  9. Swiftnoun

    Alternative letter-case form of SWIFT

  10. Etymology: From the verb swīfan

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. SWIFTadjective

    Etymology: swift , Saxon.

    Thou art so far before,
    That swiftest wing of recompence is slow
    To overtake thee. William Shakespeare.

    Yet are these feet, whose strengthless stay is numb,
    Unable to support this lump of clay,
    Swift-winged with desire to get a grave. William Shakespeare.

    Men of war, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and as swift as the roes upon the mountains. 1 Chron. xii. 8.

    We imitate and practise to make swifter motions than any out of other muskets. Francis Bacon.

    To him with swift ascent he up return’d. John Milton.

    Things that move so swift as not to affect the senses distinctly, with several distinguishable distances of their motion, and so cause not any train of ideas in the mind, are not perceived to move. John Locke.

    It preserves the ends of the bones from incalescency, which they, being solid bodies, would contract from any swift motion. John Ray.

    Thy stumbling founder’d jade can trot as high
    As any other Pegasus can fly;
    So the dull eel moves nimbler in the mud,
    Than all the swift fin’d racers of the flood. Dorset.

    Clouded in a deep abyss of light,
    While present, too severe for human sight,
    Nor staying longer than one swift-wing’d night. Matthew Prior.

    Mantiger made a circle round the chamber, and the swift-footed martin pursued him. Arbuthnot.

    There too my son, ———— ah once my best delight,
    Once swift of foot, and terrible in fight. Alexander Pope, Odyssey.

    Swift they descend, with wing to wing conjoin’d,
    Stretch their broad plumes, and float upon the wind. Alexander Pope.

    Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak. Ja. i. 19.

    He made intricate seem straight,
    To mischief swift. John Milton.

  2. Swiftnoun

    Etymology: from the quickness of their flight.

    Swifts and swallows have remarkably short legs, and their toes grasp any thing very strongly. William Derham.

    He can live in the strongest swifts of the water. Izaak Walton.


  1. SWIFT

    The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), legally S.W.I.F.T. SC, is a Belgian cooperative society providing services related to the execution of financial transactions and payments between banks worldwide. Its principal function is to serve as the main messaging network through which international payments are initiated. It also sells software and services to financial institutions, mostly for use on its proprietary "SWIFTNet", and assigns ISO 9362 Business Identifier Codes (BICs), popularly known as "SWIFT codes". The SWIFT messaging network is a component of the global payments system. SWIFT acts as a carrier of the "messages containing the payment instructions between financial institutions involved in a transaction". However, the organization does not manage accounts on behalf of individuals or financial institutions, and it does not hold funds from third parties. It also does not perform clearing or settlement functions. After a payment has been initiated, it must be settled through a payment system, such as TARGET2 in Europe. In the context of cross-border transactions, this step often takes place through correspondent banking accounts that financial institutions have with each other.As of 2018, around half of all high-value cross-border payments worldwide used the SWIFT network, and in 2015, SWIFT linked more than 11,000 financial institutions in over 200 countries and territories, who were exchanging an average of over 32 million messages per day (compared to an average of 2.4 million daily messages in 1995).Though widely utilized, SWIFT has been criticized for its inefficiency. In 2018, the London-based Financial Times noted that transfers frequently "pass through multiple banks before reaching their final destination, making them time-consuming, costly and lacking transparency on how much money will arrive at the other end". SWIFT has since introduced an improved service called "Global Payments Innovation" (GPI), claiming it was adopted by 165 banks and was completing half its payments within 30 minutes.As a cooperative society under Belgian law, SWIFT is owned by its member financial institutions. It is headquartered in La Hulpe, Belgium, near Brussels; its main building was designed by Ricardo Bofill Taller de Arquitectura and completed in 1989. The chairman of SWIFT is Yawar Shah of Pakistan, and its CEO is Javier Pérez-Tasso of Spain. SWIFT hosts an annual conference, called Sibos, specifically aimed at the financial services industry.


  1. swift

    Swift refers to moving or happening quickly, being able to act or respond immediately, or being prompt or rapid in doing something. In computer programming, Swift is also a robust and intuitive programming language developed by Apple for iOS and Mac apps.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Swiftverb

    moving a great distance in a short time; moving with celerity or velocity; fleet; rapid; quick; speedy; prompt

  2. Swiftverb

    of short continuance; passing away quickly

  3. Swiftadverb


  4. Swiftnoun

    the current of a stream

  5. Swiftnoun

    any one of numerous species of small, long-winged, insectivorous birds of the family Micropodidae. In form and habits the swifts resemble swallows, but they are destitute of complex vocal muscles and are not singing birds, but belong to a widely different group allied to the humming birds

  6. Swiftnoun

    any one of several species of lizards, as the pine lizard

  7. Swiftnoun

    the ghost moth. See under Ghost

  8. Swiftnoun

    a reel, or turning instrument, for winding yarn, thread, etc.; -- used chiefly in the plural

  9. Swiftnoun

    the main card cylinder of a flax-carding machine

  10. Etymology: [Cf. Swivel.]


  1. Swift

    The swifts are a family, Apodidae, of highly aerial birds. They are superficially similar to swallows, but are actually not closely related to passerine species at all; swifts are in the separate order Apodiformes, which they share with hummingbirds. The treeswifts are closely related to the true swifts, but form a separate family, the Hemiprocnidae. The resemblances between swifts and swallows are due to convergent evolution, reflecting similar life styles based on catching insects in flight. The family scientific name comes from the Ancient Greek απους, apous, meaning "without feet", since swifts have very short legs and never settle voluntarily on the ground, clinging instead to vertical surfaces. The tradition of depicting swifts without feet continued into the Middle Ages, as seen in the heraldic martlet.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Swift

    swift, adj. moving quickly: fleet, rapid: speedy: ready.—n. a genus (Cypselus) and family (Cypselidæ) of picarian birds, resembling the swallows in general appearance and habits, but most closely allied by anatomical structure to the humming-birds—with long pointed wings, a short tail, and remarkable powers of rapid and prolonged flight: the common newt: a reel for winding yarn: the main cylinder of a carding-machine: the current of a stream.—n. Swif′ter, any rope temporarily used to tighten or keep a thing in its place.—adjs. Swift′-foot′ed; Swift′-hand′ed; Swift′-heeled.—adv. Swift′ly, with swiftness: rapidly.—n. Swift′ness, quality of being swift: quickness: fleetness: rapidity: speed.—adj. Swift′-winged. [A.S. swift, from same root as swoop.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. swift

    When the lower rigging becomes slack at sea, single blocks are placed on each shroud about 8 feet above the deck, a hawser rove through them, and the rigging swifted in, to bring a fair strain. The bars of the capstan are swifted, by passing a rope-swifter over all their ends, and bowsing it well taut. The rigging is also swifted down preparatory to replacing the ratlines truly horizontal after setting up.

Suggested Resources

  1. swift

    Song lyrics by swift -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by swift on the Lyrics.com website.

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. SWIFT

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Swift is ranked #1473 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Swift surname appeared 24,249 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 8 would have the surname Swift.

    78.1% or 18,953 total occurrences were White.
    15.9% or 3,863 total occurrences were Black.
    2.4% or 582 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    2% or 487 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    0.9% or 223 total occurrences were American Indian or Alaskan Native.
    0.5% or 138 total occurrences were Asian.

How to pronounce swift?

How to say swift in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of swift in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of swift in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Examples of swift in a Sentence

  1. Visa Inc:

    As a sponsor, we expect FIFA to take swift and immediate steps to address these issues within its organization. This starts with rebuilding a culture with strong ethical practices in order to restore the reputation of the game for fans everywhere.

  2. Charles R. Swindoll:

    The swift wind of compromise is a lot more devastating than the sudden jolt of misfortune.

  3. Nikolai Zhuravlev:

    SWIFT is an European company, an association of many participating countries. To make a decision on disconnection, a united decision of all participating countries is needed. The decisions of the United States and Great Britain are definitely not enough, i'm not sure that other countries, especially those whose share of trade with Russia is large in balance, will support the shutdown.

  4. Stephen Lamar:

    We urge the full and immediate restoration of democratic rights and institutions, our hearts and prayers are with the Myanmar people for a swift, peaceful, and democratic resolution to this crisis – one that does not take away the economic progress made by the hardworking people of Myanmar.

  5. Hugh Cumberland:

    This image of the SWIFT network and the surrounding ecosystem being secure and impenetrable has encouraged complacency.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for swift

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"swift." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 24 May 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/swift>.

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