verb (used with object), bit, bit·ten or bit, bit·ing.
- to take advantage of; cheat; deceive: I got bitten in a mail-order swindle.
- to annoy or upset; anger: What's biting you, sorehead?
verb (used without object), bit, bit·ten or bit, bit·ing.
- the catch or hold that one object or one part of a mechanical apparatus has on another.
- a surface brought into contact to obtain a hold or grip, as in a lathe chuck or similar device.
- the amount of material that a mechanical shovel or the like can carry at one time.
- to solicit or attempt to borrow money or something of value from.
- to press for money, as in extortion: They found out about his prison record and began to put the bite on him.
Origin of bite
Synonyms for bite
Examples from the Web for bite
Contemporary Examples of bite
Leapolitan responded by saying, “hopefully youll [sic] bite into a poison apple.”Grindr’s Trans Dating Problem
January 9, 2015
One bite too many, and I could look down and practically see my thighs expanding before my eyes.You’re Never ‘Cured’ of an Eating Disorder
December 20, 2014
Taking a bite out of it made me feel like I was at a family bris… in a good, nostalgic way.I Ate Potato Pancakes Til I Plotzed
December 17, 2014
She has this little bit of a bite to her and a fight within her that does come through in little moments.Exit Interview: The Walking Dead's Beth Tells All
December 1, 2014
As soon as she took a bite of the apple, she fell to the ground and was dead.In New Brothers Grimm 'Snow White', The Prince Doesn't Save Her
The Brothers Grimm
November 30, 2014
Historical Examples of bite
It was as a poison flowing in his veins and giving him an impulse to bite like a mad dog.The Works of Guy de Maupassant, Volume VIII.
Guy de Maupassant
Yet she looked again at his shack, with her lower lip in the bite of her teeth.The Peace of Roaring River
George van Schaick
How can a sheep dog work a flock of sheep unless he can bite occasionally as well as bark?The Way of All Flesh
Things are beginning to bite me again, great horrid things of all kinds.A Journal from Japan
Marie Carmichael Stopes
Of snakes there are two or three sorts: but whether the bite of any of them be mortal, or even venomous, is somewhat doubtful.
verb bites, biting, bit or bitten
Word Origin for bite
Old English bitan (class I strong verb; past tense bat, past participle biten), from Proto-Germanic *bitan (cf. Old Saxon bitan, Old Norse and Old Frisian bita, Middle Dutch biten, Dutch bijten, German beissen, Gothic beitan "to bite"), from PIE root *bheid- "to split, crack" (see fissure).
To bite the bullet is said to be 1700s military slang, from old medical custom of having the patient bite a lead bullet during an operation to divert attention from pain and reduce screaming. Figurative use from 1891; the custom itself attested from 1840s. To bite (one's) tongue "refrain from speaking" is 1590s. To bite the dust "die" is 1750 (Latin had the same image; cf. Virgil: procubuit moriens et humum semel ore momordit). To bite off more than one can chew (c.1880) is U.S. slang, from plug tobacco.
c.1200, from bite (v).
In addition to the idioms beginning with bite
- bite off more than one can chew
- bite one's nails
- bite one's tongue
- bite someone's head off
- bite the bullet
- bite the dust
- bite the hand that feeds you
- bark is worse than one's bite
- put the bite on
- sound bite