Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.
To depart very quickly. The phrase refers to the way some animals raise their tails when fleeing. We hightailed it out of the party when we heard police sirens approaching. I hightailed it to the store for cleaning supplies when I heard that my mother-in-law was coming to town.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
Go as fast as possible, especially in leaving; rush off. For example, With the police now searching for them, they hightailed it out of town, or When Jane remembered it was his birthday, she hightailed it to the bakery for a cake. This expression alludes to the raised tail of a rabbit or other animal that is fleeing. [Colloquial; late 1800s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ˈhightail it(informal, especially American English) leave somewhere very quickly: As soon as the bell went for the end of lessons, Jack ran out of the school gates and hightailed it for home.
This is a comparison with the way some animals raise their tails when they are running away.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
To hurry or flee.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.