The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Short \Short\, a. [Compar. Shorter; superl. Shortest.] [OE.
short, schort, AS. scort, sceort; akin to OHG. scurz, Icel.
skorta to be short of, to lack, and perhaps to E. shear, v.
t. Cf. Shirt.]
1. Not long; having brief length or linear extension; as, a
short distance; a short piece of timber; a short flight.
The bed is shorter than that a man can stretch
himself on it. --Isa. xxviii.
2. Not extended in time; having very limited duration; not
protracted; as, short breath.
The life so short, the craft so long to learn.
To short absense I could yield. --Milton.
3. Limited in quantity; inadequate; insufficient; scanty; as,
a short supply of provisions, or of water.
4. Insufficiently provided; inadequately supplied; scantily
furnished; lacking; not coming up to a resonable, or the
ordinary, standard; -- usually with of; as, to be short of
We shall be short in our provision. --Shak.
5. Deficient; defective; imperfect; not coming up, as to a
measure or standard; as, an account which is short of the
6. Not distant in time; near at hand.
Marinell was sore offended
That his departure thence should be so short.
He commanded those who were appointed to attend him
to be ready by a short day. --Clarendon.
7. Limited in intellectual power or grasp; not comprehensive;
narrow; not tenacious, as memory.
Their own short understandings reach
No farther than the present. --Rowe.
8. Less important, efficaceous, or powerful; not equal or
equivalent; less (than); -- with of.
Hardly anything short of an invasion could rouse
them again to war. --Landor.
9. Abrupt; brief; pointed; petulant; as, he gave a short
answer to the question.
10. (Cookery) Breaking or crumbling readily in the mouth;
crisp; as, short pastry.
11. (Metal) Brittle.
Note: Metals that are brittle when hot are called ?ot-short;
as, cast iron may be hot-short, owing to the presence
of sulphur. Those that are brittle when cold are called
cold-short; as, cast iron may be cold-short, on account
of the presence of phosphorus.
12. (Stock Exchange) Engaging or engaged to deliver what is
not possessed; as, short contracts; to be short of stock.
See The shorts, under Short, n., and To sell short,
under Short, adv.
Note: In mercantile transactions, a note or bill is sometimes
made payable at short sight, that is, in a little time
after being presented to the payer.
13. (Phon.) Not prolonged, or relatively less prolonged, in
utterance; -- opposed to long, and applied to vowels or
to syllables. In English, the long and short of the same
letter are not, in most cases, the long and short of the
same sound; thus, the i in ill is the short sound, not of
i in isle, but of ee in eel, and the e in pet is the
short sound of a in pate, etc. See Quantity, and Guide
to Pronunciation, [sect][sect]22, 30.
Note: Short is much used with participles to form numerous
self-explaining compounds; as, short-armed,
short-billed, short-fingered, short-haired,
short-necked, short-sleeved, short-tailed,
short-winged, short-wooled, etc.
At short notice, in a brief time; promptly.
Short rib (Anat.), one of the false ribs.
Short suit (Whist), any suit having only three cards, or
less than three. --R. A. Proctor.
To come short, To cut short, To fall short, etc. See
under Come, Cut, etc.