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Fast and Loose (To play)

.

To run with the hare and hold with the hounds; to blow both hot and cold; to say one thing and do another. The allusion is to a cheating game practised at fairs. A belt is folded, and the player is asked to prick it with a skewer, so as to pin it fast to the table; having so done, the adversary takes the two ends, and looses it or draws it away, showing that it has not been pierced at all.

“He forced his neck into a noose,

To show his play at fast and loose;

And when he chanced tʹescape, mistook,

For art and subtlety, his luck.”


Butler: Hudibras, iii. 2.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Farrago
Farringdon Ward (London)
Farthing
Farthingale
Faryndon Inn
Fascination
Fashion [fash-un.]
Fashion of Speech (A)
Fast Girl or Young Lady (A)
Fast Man (A)
Fast and Loose (To play)
Fasti
Fasting
Fastrade
Fat
Fat Men
Fat as a Porpoise
Fata
Fata Morgana
Fatal Gifts
Fate

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