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See also: second-hand and second hand


Alternative forms[edit]


  • IPA(key): /ˈsɛk(ə)nd hand/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ænd


secondhand (not comparable)

  1. (of goods) Not new; previously owned and used by another.
    Synonyms: used, pre-owned, hand-me-down
  2. (of a dealer) Dealing in such merchandise.
  3. (figuratively) Indirect; from a secondary source; not firsthand.
    • 2013, Bruce Crow, A Land of Strangers: Cane Creek Tennessee's Mormon Massacre and its Tragic Effects on the People Who Lived There[1]:
      So nearly every name comes from a second hand source. The exception to this rule has been the vigilantes themselves. Rube Mathis and Jack Wells, both admitted to participating, and Mathis identified his brother.
    • 2014, James Lambert, “A Much Tortured Expression: A New Look At `Hobson-Jobson'”, in International Journal of Lexicography, volume 27, number 1, page 60:
      However, Partridge’s information is second-hand, and requires verification.
    • 2014, Jill Mann, Life in Words: Essays on Chaucer, the Gawain-Poet, and Malory[2]:
      The relation of Tristram's death is thus distanced from the narrative to which it belongs, and it is also distanced in that we do not see it happen with our own eyes, but hear of it by a second-hand report which introduces it incidentally, not for its own sake.
  4. (of cigarette or cigar smoke) inhaled from the air near someone else smoking.
    exposure to secondhand smoke from cigarette-smoking colleagues



secondhand (not comparable)

  1. In a used or previously-owned condition.
    • 1996, Peter Golding, Black Jack McEwen: Political Gladiator, →ISBN, page 50:
      It was almost an article of faith with McEwen never to buy new if he could buy secondhand.
    • 2004, Ruth Doan MacDougall, Henrietta Snow, →ISBN, page 47:
      He glanced back at the Jeep, which he'd bought secondhand a dozen years ago and now, fifteen years old, was gaining on "classic" status.
  2. indirectly


See also[edit]