quick as a wink

(redirected from swift as lightning)

*quick as a wink

 and *quick as a flash; *quick as (greased) lightning; *swift as lightning
very quickly. (*Also: as ~.) As quick as a wink, the thief took the lady's purse. I'll finish this work quick as a flash. Quick as greased lightning, the thief stole my wallet.
See also: quick, wink

quick as a wink

Also, quick as a bunny or a flash . Very speedily, as in He was out of here quick as a wink, or She answered, quick as a bunny. These similes have largely replaced the earlier quick as lightning, although quick as a flash no doubt alludes to it (also see like greased lightning), and quick as thought, now obsolete. The bunny variant dates from the mid-1800s, the others from the late 1800s.
See also: quick, wink
References in classic literature ?
He has embodied them as two flying figures, poised above the electric wires, and with the following inscription underneath: "By the wondrous agency of electricity, speech dashes through space and swift as lightning bears tidings of good and evil.
I was going through Lombard Street in the dusk of the evening, just by the end of Three King court, when on a sudden comes a fellow running by me as swift as lightning, and throws a bundle that was in his hand, just behind me, as I stood up against the corner of the house at the turning into the alley.
The dragon had probably heard the voices; for swift as lightning, his black head and forked tongue came hissing among the trees again, darting full forty feet at a stretch.