Definition of old hand in English:

old hand

See synonyms for old hand


  • A person with a lot of experience in something.

    ‘he was an old hand at red-tape cutting’
    • ‘The biggest problems are felt to come from clashes between out-of-towners and old hands, or between experienced surfers and the novices.’
    • ‘Perhaps I should instigate a mentoring scheme between old hands and newcomers?’
    • ‘Mr Cooper said his friend took the lead as he was more experienced at climbing crags since he was an old hand at scaling Stanage Edge in the Peak District.’
    • ‘He admitted, though, that the profession lacked old hands who had left for greener pastures.’
    • ‘For the experienced old hand, it's your knowledge in finding new ways that's of value.’
    • ‘We used to argue endlessly about the details, but rarely about the general framework he had set before us, which was nearly always helpful to newcomers to the subject and old hands alike.’
    • ‘Speaking on behalf of 24 national boxers groomed for the Sept.8 to Sept.17 Games, he said that most of them were old hands.’
    • ‘You can tell that many of the other exhibitors are old hands, because they managed throw up their mega-complex presentation stands in the same time as it took me to find the instruction booklet.’
    • ‘The old hands are hoping to inspire more people to get connected.’
    • ‘The Cabinet is a combination of new hands and old ones to give the new administration the necessary continuity from the old hands, and change and new vigour through new ones.’
    • ‘‘A lot of old hands will tell you it was better in the old days, but I am not one of them,’ he said.’
    • ‘While the younger elements in the party are aghast at the manner in which the party is functioning, for the old hands, there is nothing new, for this is the way the party has always functioned.’
    • ‘Relative to the great green waves that curl and crash further out, my ‘beach break’ is fairly tame; the real monsters are best left to old hands.’
    • ‘Far from bursting with enthusiasm for their first Euro-elections, many of these fresh-faced voters seem even less interested than the old hands.’
    • ‘He rescued the latter years of his second term by dismissing old hands, changing his inner circle and losing the ‘bunker mentality’.’
    • ‘Not one single nag have I seen plodding into town or yanked up outside any of the ‘saloons’ these old hands seem to frequent.’
    • ‘Although it was approved for publication by the agency's review board, the book has been savaged in print by some of the CIA's old hands.’
    • ‘Floridians are, unfortunately, old hands now at coping with their particular local weather disasters.’
    • ‘When old hands grumble about environmental standards, it's a good sign things are moving in the right direction.’
    • ‘In doing this, Maxwell points to a few old hands.’
    expert, past master, virtuoso, master, wizard, genius, artist, adept, professional, doyen, veteran, maestro, connoisseur, authority, grandmaster, master hand, skilled person
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old hand

/ˌōld ˈhand/ /ˌoʊld ˈhænd/