verb (spits, spitting; past and past participle spat /spat/ or spit)[no object]
- 1Eject saliva forcibly from one’s mouth, sometimes as a gesture of contempt or anger: Todd spit in Hugh’s faceMore example sentences
expectorate• informal hawk, gob
- As reported in the Manchester Evening News, more than 1,600 station workers now have access to swabbing kits, which they can use to store saliva if a customer spits at them before sending it off for analysis.
- In April 2002, he was jailed for six weeks for contempt of court for spitting at a police liaison officer in court.
- He also received a further six weeks for contempt after spitting at a court official.
- 1.1 [with object] Forcibly eject (food or liquid) from one’s mouth: he spits out his piece of coconut • figurative ATMs that spit out $20 billsMore example sentences
- I am afraid to say that this revelation caused a certain amount of food to be spat out, and scenes of a boisterous nature which cannot be tolerated in polite society.
- I looked away from my reflection in the mirror, found a Kleenex, and spat the food in my mouth out.
- At occasional intervals the faces appear to spit water from their mouths, in a reference to more classical fountain designs.
- 1.2 (spit up) North American (Especially of a baby) vomit or regurgitate food.More example sentences
- We didn't get the leather because it's leather, we got it because when the baby spits up it's easier to wipe that off leather than cloth.
- You might be able to wear the same thing every day, but your baby will undoubtedly begin spitting up after every meal, and your toddler will drip gelato on her dress and crawl in filthy piazzas.
- However, regular spitting up or vomiting in infants associated with any of the following symptoms may be a sign of a more serious problem.
- 1.3 [with object] Utter in a hostile or aggressive way: she spat abuse at the jury [with direct speech]: “Go to hell!” she spatMore example sentences
snap, say angrily, hiss
- It was the same fight as it had been nearly fifteen hundred years before, only they were less hostile and weren't spitting their words out carelessly.
- She said: ‘We have been getting abuse and been spat at and shouted at for a year.’
- The attacker spat racial abuse at the victim as he carried out the terrifying assault at Monkton Road Stores, in Monkton Road, off Byland Avenue.
- 1.4Be extremely angry or frustrated: he was spitting with sudden furyMore example sentences
- She spat back, much angrier than she appeared to be.
- Hissing and spitting like an angry cat, Arach tried to free herself, but the man was strong.
- 1.5(Of a fire or something being cooked) emit small bursts of sparks or hot fat with a series of short, explosive noises.More example sentences
- Ilea ruled the south icy realm, Aural the seas of the north, Inferna the parched lands of the west where fire spits from mountains, and Terrestra the forests of the East.
- A fire already spit in the fireplace as Alecaen took a seat on the plush blood red couch.
- It was stone cold within, but there was a pile of cut wood in one corner and soon he had a fire spitting and crackling, dancing weird patterns of red and yellow about the cabin.
- 1.6(Of a cat) make a hissing noise as a sign of anger or hostility.More example sentences
- As soon as I was done, the cat started hissing and spitting and arched its back.
- He's charging the door of his box, growling, spitting, and hissing.
- It spat and hissed, coiling about on the ground in a demented and tortured agony.
- 2 (it spits, it is spitting, etc.) British Light rain falls: it began to spitMore example sentences
- With 15 minutes to go before the start and the cars formed up on the grid, it is spitting with rain every now and again.
- The rain began to spit down across the windscreen.
- This afternoon, many people in the office turned to look at the darkening grey skies and the rain spitting on the windows.
nounBack to top
- 1Saliva, typically that which has been ejected from a person’s mouth.More example sentences
- I brought up all this phlegm and spit into my mouth, and at first it was so, so foul I nearly choked.
- Old Bruce is not happy to be reminded that he was once a porky loser who talks as if his mouth is full of spit and looks like a living donut.
- I spit on the ground to get the tastes of acid and hate out of my mouth and my spit burned a hole in the sidewalk.
- 1.1 short for cuckoo spit.
spit in the eye (or face) of
- Show contempt or scorn for.More example sentences
- In taking that approach, he completely cancels any nobility or purity of his sacrifice and spits in the face of what most religions hold dear: the sanctity of life.
- That the band was brought down by a drunk driver fuels the irony and spits in the face of what Compromise stood for.
- You will experience a sense of liberation for the rest of your working life and be able to spit in the eye of just about anyone who crosses you - a great and abiding pleasure.
spit it out
- • informal Used to urge someone to say or confess something quickly: spit it out, man, I haven’t got all dayMore example sentences
- Jonathan loathed the sound of that man's name, he hated to speak it, he spit it out quickly and swigged his coke to remove the taste.
- He took it out of Kuwait in 1991, and we made him spit it out.
- People may not like it, but I just spit it out and say it like it is.
Old English spittan, of imitative origin.
- 1A long, thin metal rod pushed through meat in order to hold and turn it while it is roasted over an open fire: chicken cooked on a spitMore example sentences
- He was just hungry and curious enough to follow his nose and went down a new alley, coming upon an Arab with an eye patch over one eye, cooking a hunk of meat on a spit over a open fire.
- We bury the skin, fur, head and entrails using a shovel we brought, and then set the meat roasting on a spit on the fire.
- Egyptian-style kebabs have chunks of lamb seasoned in onion, marjoram and freshly squeezed lemon juice, and roasted on a spit over an open fire.
- 2A narrow point of land projecting into the sea: a narrow spit of land shelters the bayMore example sentences
- Check in at the exclusive Leela Goa Hotel, which straddles a narrow spit of land between the Sal River and the Arabian Sea in Mobor.
- Built on a narrow spit of land dividing Otter Lake from Goulding Lake, the cabin proved to be the perfect base.
- Consider Orford Ness, a lonely spit of land that was once the site of military tests and is now owned by the National Trust.
verb (spits, spitting, spitted)[with object] Back to top
- Put a spit through (meat) in order to roast it over an open fire: I spitted the squirrel meat and turned it over the flamesMore example sentences
- The pieces of meat are spitted on green twigs, which are stuck into the ground in front of a blazing log.
- Fire, the most basic source of radiant heat, has been known to man for many thousands of years, and was probably used to roast meat spitted on green wood far back into prehistory.
- Some minutes later, once the squirrels were spitted and roasting near the flames, Arun began his first ‘lesson.’
Old English spitu; related to Dutch spit and German Spiess.
noun (plural same or spits)
early 16th century: from Middle Dutch and Middle Low German; probably related to spit2.