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The Collaborative International Dictionary
Avast

Avast \A*vast"\ ([.a]*v[.a]st"), interj. [Corrupted from D. houd vast hold fast. See Hold, v. t., and Fast, a.] (Naut.) Cease; stop; stay. ``Avast heaving.''
--Totten.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
avast

1680s, a nautical interjection, "hold! stop!" probably worn down from Dutch houd vast "hold fast."\n\nAVAST. -- The order to stop, or pause, in any exercise or operation; as Avast heaving -- that is to say, desist, or stop, from drawing in the cable or hawser, by means of the capstan &c. [George Biddlecombe, "The Art of Rigging," 1848] \n

Wiktionary
avast

interj. (context nautical English) hold fast!; desist!; stay!.

Wikipedia
Avast (disambiguation)

Avast may refer to:

  • The nautical term for stop or cease
  • Avast Software, a Czech technology and internet security company
    • Avast Antivirus, a security software developed by Avast Software
    • Avast SecureLine, a virtual private network (VPN) service by Avast Software
  • Avast! Recording Company, a music recording studio in Seattle, Washington
  • Avast!, one of trademarked names for herbicide fluridone

Usage examples of "avast".

It was avast butchery, 623,000 dead on both sides, and 471,000 wounded, over a million dead and wounded in a country whose population was 30 million.