MEANING: noun: A contract or agreement, especially about a betrothal or marriage.
verb tr.: To engage to be married or to bind in wedlock.

ETYMOLOGY: From Old English handfæsten (to pledge or betroth), from hand + fæstan (to fasten). Earliest documented use: 1275.

USAGE: “The couple’s decision to be handfasted under the full moon is particularly blessed and by our lights very romantic.”
Dear Abby: I Agree with You; The Washington Post; Oct 13, 2002.

BANDFAST - the music was presto

HANDCAST - thrown on a wheel by a live potter

BINDFAST - to tie down

HARDFAST - inflexible, like some rules