- food, or some substitute, used as a lure in fishing, trapping, etc.
- a poisoned lure used in exterminating pests.
- an allurement; enticement: Employees were lured with the bait of annual bonuses.
- an object for pulling molten or liquefied material, as glass, from a vat or the like by adhesion.
- South Midland and Southern U.S.
- a large or sufficient quantity or amount: He fetched a good bait of wood.
- an excessive quantity or amount.
- British Slang. food.
- to prepare (a hook or trap) with bait.
- to entice by deception or trickery so as to entrap or destroy: using fake signal lights to bait the ships onto the rocks.
- to attract, tempt, or captivate.
- to set dogs upon (an animal) for sport.
- to worry, torment, or persecute, especially with malicious remarks: a nasty habit of baiting defenseless subordinates.
- to tease: They love to bait him about his gaudy ties.
- to feed and water (a horse or other animal), especially during a journey.
Origin of bait
SynonymsSee more synonyms for bait on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for baited
As the country waited with baited breath, national media covered the mission to rescue the miners, stuck 240 feet underground.The Bangladesh Factory Collapse Survivor and More Miraculous Rescues (VIDEO)
Holly Bernal, Ben Teitelbaum
May 10, 2013
She baited the line and stood on the muddy bank in that outfit.Meghan McCain on Her Grandmother Roberta McCain’s 100th Birthday
February 7, 2012
Another soldier was outed by an Evangelical roommate who had baited him into the revelation.My Life as a Gay Officer
May 26, 2010
God has his ways of evening out the score—and one waits with baited schadenfraude and trembling.'Mom, Dad—I Need $96K'
July 10, 2009
Then we baited some of the professor's hooks with the fresh meat and went a-fishing.Tom Sawyer Abroad
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
And I found that it could be baited and mellowed only by a liberal tip.The Book of Khalid
I helped her up on to this rock and baited her hook with shrimp.The Rise of Roscoe Paine
Joseph C. Lincoln
It was evident that there was no great objection to seeing Huntington baited.The Heart of Thunder Mountain
Edfrid A. Bingham
Then he baited his two hooks with bits of tentacle and threw them overboard.The Harbor of Doubt
- something edible, such as soft bread paste, worms, or pieces of meat, fixed to a hook or in a trap to attract fish or animals
- an enticement; temptation
- a variant spelling of bate 4
- Northern English dialect food, esp a packed lunch
- archaic a short stop for refreshment during a journey
- (tr) to put a piece of food on or in (a hook or trap)
- (tr) to persecute or tease
- (tr) to entice; tempt
- (tr) to set dogs upon (a bear, etc)
- (tr) archaic to feed (a horse), esp during a break in a journey
- (intr) archaic to stop for rest and refreshment during a journey
- a variant spelling of bate 2
Word Origin and History for baited
"food put on a hook or trap to lure prey," c.1300, from Old Norse beita "food," related to Old Norse beit "pasture," Old English bat "food," literally "to cause to bite" (see bait (v.)). Figurative sense "anything used as a lure" is from c.1400.
"to torment or goad (someone unable to escape, and to take pleasure in it)," c.1300, beyten, a figurative use from the literal sense of "to set dogs on," from the medieval entertainment of setting dogs on some ferocious animal to bite and worry it (the literal use is attested from c.1300); from Old Norse beita "to cause to bite," from Proto-Germanic *baitan (cf. Old English bætan "to cause to bite," Old High German beizzen "to bait," Middle High German beiz "hunting," German beizen "to hawk, to cauterize, etch"), causative of *bitan (see bite (v.)); the causative word forked into the two meanings of "harass" and "food offered." Related: Baited; baiting.
"to put food on a hook or in a trap," c.1300, probably from bait (n.). Related: Baited; baiting.
Idioms and Phrases with baited
In addition to the idiom beginning with bait
- bait and switch
- fish or cut bait
- jump at (the bait)
- rise to the bait