views updated May 14 2018

eas·y / ˈēzē/ • adj. (eas·i·er , eas·i·est ) 1. achieved without great effort; presenting few difficulties: an easy way of retrieving information. ∎  (of an object of attack or criticism) having no defense; vulnerable: he was vulnerable and an easy target. ∎ inf., derog. (of a woman) open to sexual advances; sexually available: her reputation at school for being easy.2. (of a period of time or way of life) free from worries or problems: promises of an easy life in the New World. ∎  (of a person) lacking anxiety or awkwardness; relaxed: his easy and agreeable manner.• interj. be careful: easy, girl—you'll knock me over!PHRASES: be easier said than done be more easily talked about than put into practice.easy come, easy go used to indicate that a relationship or possession acquired without effort may be abandoned or lost casually and without regret.easy does it used esp. in spoken English to advise someone to approach a task carefully and slowly.easy on the eye (or ear) inf. pleasant to look at (or listen to).go (or be) easy on someone inf. refrain from being harsh with or critical of someone.go easy on something inf. be sparing or cautious in one's use or consumption of something: go easy on fatty foods.have it easy inf. be free from difficulties; be fortunate.rest (or sleep) easy be untroubled by (or go to sleep without) worries: this insurance policy will let you rest easy.take it easy proceed calmly and in a relaxed manner. ∎  make little effort; rest.DERIVATIVES: eas·i·ness n.


views updated May 21 2018

easy easy come, easy go something which is acquired without effort will be lost without regret; proverbial saying, mid 17th century. Early 15th-century French has ‘soon acquired, soon spent.’ (Compare light come, light go and quickly come, quickly go.)
easy does it often used as a warning against impetuous behaviour; saying recorded from the mid 19th century.

See also easy meat, it is easy to find a stick to beat a dog, it is easy to be wise after the event.


views updated May 23 2018

easy at ease, free from constraint or discomfort XII; causing little or no discomfort or difficulty; not oppressive or painful XIV. — AN. aisé, OF. aisié (mod. aisé), pp. of aisier put at ease (see EASE vb.); see -Y1.
Hence easy-chair XVIII. easy adv. XIV; comb. in easy-going XVII.