Definition of lickety-split in US English:



North American
  • As quickly as possible; immediately.

    ‘I took off lickety-split across the lawn’
    • ‘The first theme, a lickety-split series of parallel chords hopping up the keyboard, sounds like the giddy mockery of an older person's pomposity.’
    • ‘However, I can now turn over my OR and do my machine check or jam a needle into your spine lickety-split.’
    • ‘We also ordered a bottle of sake, which arrived lickety-split.’
    • ‘The man should be lauded for wanting to get places lickety-split.’
    • ‘Once mealtime is over, cleanup is lickety-split too.’
    • ‘After all, they already assemble and disassemble floors lickety-split on top of hockey rinks.’
    • ‘While leaving day-to-day operations to company veterans - unlike most other turnaround artists, he doesn't bring in his own managers - he assembles a restructuring plan lickety-split.’
    • ‘Hmm… I don't think Nathaniel is gone for good just yet, although he is not in this chapter… besides, what fun would it be if Thomas and Kate just got together lickety-split?’
    • ‘Before you go from 5K runner to marathoner lickety-split, you'll have to address the second tenet of neuromuscular training: teaching your mind to push through pain, because - we won't lie to you - there's a lot of it.’
    • ‘There's only one man for the job - and I know he'll have you out of here lickety-split.’
    • ‘Despite stock market woes, people are still buying housing lickety-split, fueled by piles of equity in their current properties and rock-bottom mortgage interest rates.’
    • ‘The first movement, a lickety-split toccata, exploits what Lees calls a ‘trill’ idea and what I think of as more of a skip.’
    • ‘If the human rights committee of the United Nations makes recommendations, there are members in this House who would have those implemented in New Zealand lickety-split.’
    • ‘The high-pressure water stream can eat a hole in your fence or make kindling out of your lattice lickety-split.’
    • ‘You would think that he would tell him to rattle the cage of the Auditor General, and get a report in lickety-split so that they could make an intelligent assessment.’
    • ‘Sure enough, the paint rubs off, lickety-split.’
    • ‘If he really was a stalker, he'd find it lickety-split.’
    • ‘These include a lickety-split Don Giovanni (live from Aix), a disc of Beethoven overtures, and Brahms's Third and Fourth Symphonies.’
    • ‘And yet he's had a very sunny disposition, telling great stories about how everybody is moving through lickety-split.’
    • ‘Whipping out lickety-split footwork and curiously fey gestures in improbable succession, his character seemed controlled by external forces.’
    quickly, fast, swiftly, speedily, at speed, at full speed, at the speed of light, post-haste, hotfoot, at full tilt, as fast as one's legs can carry one, at a gallop, expeditiously, briskly, promptly
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Early 19th century (in the phrase as fast as lickety ‘at full speed’): from a fanciful extension of lick + split (verb).