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[spi-toon] /spɪˈtun/
a cuspidor.
Origin of spittoon
An Americanism dating back to 1815-25; spit1 + -oon Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for spittoon
Historical Examples
  • The Ranger poured his untasted liquor into the spittoon and settled the bill.

    Oh, You Tex! William Macleod Raine
  • He now rose and walked over to the spittoon before going on.

    A Spoil of Office Hamlin Garland
  • The outgoing tenant had obviously used the hearth as a spittoon.

    Nights in London

    Thomas Burke
  • A refined sort of spittoon has been introduced, with a high handle.

    Fred Markham in Russia W. H. G. Kingston
  • I wish youd take off that apron an bleed into the spittoon, he said as calm as he could.

    Friar Tuck Robert Alexander Wason
  • After using the spittoon, the fellow pushed it over beside the chair with his foot.

    Within the Capes Howard Pyle
  • A spittoon occupied a prominent place in the center of the room.

  • The spittoon in falling from the retainer's hand had not been overturned.

    Legends of Gods and Ghosts (Hawaiian Mythology)

    W. D. (William Drake) Westervelt
  • I put my head in the spittoon, and crawled out under the door.

    From Sea to Sea Rudyard Kipling
  • The most indispensable, most conspicuous, piece of furniture in America is the spittoon.

British Dictionary definitions for spittoon


a receptacle for spit, usually in a public place
Word Origin
C19: from spit1 + -oon: see saloon, balloon, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for spittoon

1823, American English, from spit (n.1) + -oon. A rare instance of a word formed in English using this suffix (octoroon is another). Replaced earlier spitting box (1680s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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