handbreadth

(redirected from hand's breadth)
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Synonyms for handbreadth

any unit of length based on the breadth of the human hand

References in classic literature ?
Haley's horse, which was a white one, and very fleet and spirited, appeared to enter into the spirit of the scene with great gusto; and having for his coursing ground a lawn of nearly half a mile in extent, gently sloping down on every side into indefinite woodland, he appeared to take infinite delight in seeing how near he could allow his pursuers to approach him, and then, when within a hand's breadth, whisk off with a start and a snort, like a mischievous beast as he was and career far down into some alley of the wood-lot.
Zarathustra steps on him unawares, and the slave of science, bleeding from the violence he has done to himself by his self-imposed task, speaks proudly of his little sphere of knowledge--his little hand's breadth of ground on Zarathustra's territory, philosophy.
The Cormons end as they began; there's only a hand's breadth between a steward and a purveyor.
Perhaps a compromise is one of those cots with a drop side so that the baby sleeps on their own, can smell the closeness of mum and is only a hand's breadth away from her.
If it falls within a hand's breadth it is "spangey ones, or wonzzers".