From Middle English redy, redi, rædiȝ, iredi, ȝerǣdi, alteration ( + -y) of earlier irēd, irede, ȝerād (“ready, prepared”), from Old English rǣde, ġerǣde (also ġerȳde) ("prepared, prompt, ready, ready for riding (horse), mounted (on a horse), skilled, simple, easy"), from Proto-Germanic *garaidijaz, *raidijaz, from base *raidaz (“ready”), from Proto-Indo-European *rēydʰ-, *rēy- (“to count, put in order, arrange, make comfortable”) and also probably conflated with Proto-Indo-European *reydʰ- (“to ride”) in the sense of "set to ride, able or fit to go, ready". Cognate with Scots readie, reddy (“ready, prepared”), West Frisian ree (“ready”), Dutch gereed (“ready”), German bereit (“ready”), Danish rede (“ready”), Swedish redo (“ready, fit, prepared”), Norwegian reiug (“ready, prepared”), Icelandic greiður (“easy, light”), Gothic 𐌲𐌰𐍂𐌰𐌹𐌸𐍃 (garaiþs, “arranged, ordered”).
ready (comparative readier, superlative readiest)
- Prepared for immediate action or use.
The troops are ready for battle.
The porridge is ready to serve.
- 1711, Jonathan Swift, journal to Stella
- she was told dinner was ready
- Inclined; apt to happen.
- Liable at any moment.
The seed is ready to sprout.
c. 1596–1598, William Shakespeare, “The Merchant of Venice”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act IV, scene i]:
My heart is ready to crack.
- Not slow or hesitating; quick in action or perception of any kind.
- Synonyms: dexterous, prompt, easy, expert
a ready apprehension
a ready writer or workman
1820, Walter Scott, Ivanhoe; a Romance. […], volume (please specify |volume=I, II, or III), Edinburgh: […] Archibald Constable and Co.; London: Hurst, Robinson, and Co. […], OCLC 230694662:
whose temper was ready, though surly
1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], “The First Gun”, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., […], OCLC 752825175, page 16:
Molly the dairymaid came a little way from the rickyard, and said she would pluck the pigeon that very night after work. She was always ready to do anything for us boys; and we could never quite make out why they scolded her so for an idle hussy indoors. It seemed so unjust. Looking back, I recollect she had very beautiful brown eyes.
2013 August 10, Lexington, “Keeping the mighty honest”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8848:
The [Washington] Post's proprietor through those turbulent [Watergate] days, Katharine Graham, held a double place in Washington’s hierarchy: at once regal Georgetown hostess and scrappy newshound, ready to hold the establishment to account.
- Offering itself at once; at hand; opportune; convenient.
1667, John Milton, “Book 10”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: […] [Samuel Simmons], […], OCLC 228722708; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, OCLC 230729554, line 1097:
Through the wilde Deſert, not the readieſt way,
- 1700, John Dryden, Theodore and Honoria
- A sapling pine he wrenched from out the ground, / The readiest weapon that his fury found.
liable at any moment
- Finnish: valmis (fi), expressed with 5th infinitive of a verb
not slow or hesitating; quick in action or perception
at hand; opportune; convenient
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
Translations to be checked
ready (third-person singular simple present readies, present participle readying, simple past and past participle readied)
- (transitive) To prepare; to make ready for action.
to make prepared for action
ready (countable and uncountable, plural readies)
- (slang) ready money; cash
- Lord Strut was not flush in ready, either to go to law, or to clear old debts.
- 2008, Agnes Owens, The Group
- […] he was generous when he had the cash. Many a time he kept me going in drink through the week when I was stuck for the ready […]