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Speed appears in the following palindromes (phrases that read the same backward as forward):

  • Deep sleep or DNA can drop eel speed.
  • Deep stare: liar times a semi-trailer at speed.
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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun speed:


Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the verb speed:


The word speed is considered to be an easy one, according to the Dale-Chall word list, which includes 3000 words that all fourth-grade American students should know and understand.

Video footage: Young male opens curtains to bright sunny day, sips coffee and looks out of window, filmed at half speed.
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Definition of the noun speed

What does speed mean as a name of something?

Speed is one of the top 1000 most common nouns in the English language.

noun - plural: speeds

  1. distance travelled per unit time
    • lexical domain: Time - nouns denoting time and temporal relations
    • synonym of speed: velocity
    • more generic word: rate = a magnitude or frequency relative to a time unit
    • more specific terms:
      • angular velocity = the rate of change of the angular position of a rotating body
      • airspeed = the speed of an aircraft relative to the air in which it is flying
      • escape velocity = the minimum velocity needed to escape a gravitational field
      • groundspeed = the speed of an aircraft relative to the ground
      • hypervelocity = excessive velocity
      • muzzle velocity = the velocity of a projectile as it leaves the muzzle of a gun
      • peculiar velocity = velocity with respect to the local standard of rest
      • radial velocity = velocity along the line of sight toward or away from the observer
      • speed of light / light speed / c = the speed at which light travels in a vacuum
      • steerageway = the minimum rate of motion needed for a vessel to be maneuvered
      • terminal velocity = the constant maximum velocity reached by a body falling through the atmosphere under the attraction of gravity
  2. a rate (usually rapid) at which something happens
    • example: the project advanced with gratifying speed
    • lexical domain: Attributes - nouns denoting attributes of people and objects
    • synonyms of speed: fastness / swiftness
    • more generic words: pace / rate = the relative speed of progress or change
    • more specific terms:
    • attributes:
      • fast = acting or moving or capable of acting or moving quickly
      • slow = not moving quickly
  3. changing location rapidly
  4. the ratio of the focal length to the diameter of a (camera) lens system
  5. a central nervous system stimulant that increases energy and decreases appetite; used to treat narcolepsy and some forms of depression

Alternative definition of the noun speed


  1. the state of moving quickly or the capacity for rapid motion; rapidity
  2. the rate of motion or action, specifically [mathematics]/[physics] the magnitude of the velocity; the rate distance is traversed in a given time
  3. [photography] the sensitivity to light of film, plates.
  4. [slang] any amphetamine drug used as a stimulant, especially illegally, especially methamphetamine
  5. [archaic] luck, success, prosperity

proper noun

  1. surname, from Middle English

Specialised definition of the noun speed

Glossary of sports

the scalar quantity of the velocity vector. Speed is measured in meters per second (ms-1). (Mark H. Anshel. 1991. Dictionary of the Sport and Exercise Sciences. Human Kinetics Books Champaign, Illinois)

one of the motor characteristics. In the coordinative area reaction speed is the ability to react as quickly as possible to signals (sensory input); in the area of condition motor speed is the ability to execute cyclical or acyclical movements with high velocity. Speed is denoted as the quotient of distance s and time t: v=s/t, but also as movement frequency, i.e. movement units per time unit. (Herbert Haag & Gerald Haag. 2003. Dictionary. Sport, Physical Education, Sport Science. Kiel, Institut für Sport und Sportwissenschaften)

the rate at which something moves or is done (2008. Dictionary of Leisure, Travel and Tourism. Third edition. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)

Definition of the verb speed

What does speed mean as a doing word?

Speed is one of the top 1000 most common verbs in the English language.

verb - inflections:

 simple pastpast participlepresent participlethird-person singular

  1. move hurridly
  2. move faster
  3. move very fast
  4. travel at an excessive or illegal velocity
    • examples: I got a ticket for speeding | These cars won't speed
    • lexical domain: Motions - verbs of walking, flying, swimming
    • more generic words: go / locomote / move / travel = change location
  5. cause to move faster

Specialised definition of the verb speed

Glossary of sports

to drive a car faster than the legal speed (2008. Dictionary of Leisure, Travel and Tourism. Third edition. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)

Phrases with Speed

Phrases starting with the word Speed:

  1. speed up
  2. speed cop
  3. Speed Die
  4. speed bump
  5. Speed dial
  6. Speed hump
  7. speed trap
  8. Speed-Dial

Phrases ending with the word Speed:

  1. Bat Speed
  2. Hip Speed
  3. Low-Speed
  4. Off-Speed
  5. Ten-Speed
  6. Film speed
  7. high-speed
  8. Warp Speed
  9. Wind speed
  10. Wire speed
  11. Clock Speed
  12. light speed

View more phrases with the word Speed in thesaurus!

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Speed

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewAerospace Engineering e-Mega Reference (2009)

by Mike Tooley, Antonio Filippone, T.H.G. Megson, Michael V. Cook, P. W. Carpenter, E. L. Houghton, David Wyatt, Lloyd R. Jenkinson, Jim Marchman, Filippo De Florio, John Watkinson, Pini Gurfil, Howard D Curtis

The dash speed is a supersonic speed that can be maintained for a relatively short time (or distance), enough to escape a...

Google previewSAT Subject Test Physics (2017)

by Kaplan Test Prep

Speed is a scalar and velocity is a vector. Acceleration is the rate at...

While average speed is the total distance divided by the total time, average velocity is the change in position divided by the change in time. Since velocity is a vector, we ...

Google previewOperator's Manual for Army RC-12H Aircraft (1991)

The best angle-of-climb speed is the airspeed which delivers the greatest gain of altitude in the shortest possible horizontal...

Google previewNikon D750 (2014)

From Snapshots to Great Shots by Rob Sylvan

The longer it remains open, the more time your sensor has to gather shutter speeds A slow shutter speed refers to leaving the...

Google previewCliffsNotes Praxis II (2013)

Middle School Science (0439) by Glen E. Moulton

Technically, speed is the distance traveled divided by the time it took to travel that distance. The International System of Units (SI) has established that the unit for speed is meters per second (mls). Other commonly used units are kilometers per ...

Google previewSun Tzu and the Art of Modern Warfare (2014)

Updated Edition by Mark R. McNeilly

Speed is a substitute for resources. In warfare a smaller, more mobile army can defeat a much larger one by rapid movement. Moving quickly to attack parts of the larger one before it can react and coordinate its forces, the smaller army defeats ...

Google previewDyke's Automobile and Gasoline Engine Encyclopedia (1920)

by Andrew Lee Dyke

The truck engine is a slower speed engine than the automobile engine. The average maximum speed of a truck engine is 900 to 1000 r.p. m. The engine speed is controlled by a hand throttle and foot accelerator, the same as the automobile ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Chemical Processing and Design (1997)

Volume 61 - Vacuum System Design to Velocity: Terminal in Setting: Estimation by John J. McKetta Jr

Speed. Drives,. Electric. Versus. Hydraulic. Pumps, fans and other rotating equipment can be powered by electric or hydraulic drives, as well as by other types. In comparison with hydraulic drives, electric drives are more efficient, so operating ...

Google previewThe Froehlich/Kent Encyclopedia of Telecommunications (1993)

Volume 7 - Electrical Filters: Fundamentals and System Applications to Federal Communications Commission of the United States by Fritz E. Froehlich, Allen Kent

Earlier LANs considered by the international standards committees have been low speed with a transmission rate of 20 Mb/s or less. At these transmission speeds, there may be only one packet propagating in the transmission medium at any ...

Google previewFlip Dictionary (2002)

by Barbara Kipfer

style speeches, leader who makes impassioned: demagogue, rabble-rouser speechless: amazed, astounded, dumb, mum, mute, shocked, silent speechmaking as delay tactic: filibuster speechwriter, historian, chronicler: logographer speed: ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of International Sports Studies: P-Z (2006)

by Roger Bartlett, Chris Gratton, Christer Rolf

PROPRIOCEPTION because the range is roughly proportional to the square of the projection speed. Doubling the projection speed would increase the range about fourfold. Projection height (yu) is not equal to zero if the projectile lands ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Speed

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Photos about Speed

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View more pictures about Speed Graphic and Speed of Light.

If you need related images for an article or a report, you can download stock photos:
Small photo of Abstract image of speed motion on the road.Small photo of Speed limit sign with a traffic in the backgroundSmall photo of SPEED LIGHT BACKGROUNDSmall photo of Speed motion in urban highway road tunnelSmall photo of SPEED LIGHT BACKGROUNDSmall photo of Speed limit sign with a traffic in the backgroundSmall photo of 75np speed limit sign at night next to afreeway at night More...

Video language resources about Speed

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View more videos about Hip Speed, Full Speed, High Speed, Warp Speed, and Shutter speed.

See also the pronunciation examples of Speed!

Sign language

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Quotes about Speed

The speed of the boss is the speed of the team. (Lee Iacocca)
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Scrabble value of S1P3E1E1D2

The value of this 5-letter word is 8 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

Anagrams of SPEED

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What do you get if you reverse the order of the letters?

See also the index of semordnilaps!

Other anagrams

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See also the blanagrams of Speed!

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