verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- the best or choicest of the animals, especially puppies, in a litter.
- the best of any class, group, or available selection.
Origin of litter
Examples from the Web for litter
We coo over how cute our cat is and minimize the drudgery of cleaning the litter box.
According to Swiss press reports, younger cats in the litter are the most tender and, as such, are the preferred cat cuts.Will the Swiss Quit Cooking their Kittens and Puppies?|Barbie Latza Nadeau|November 30, 2014|DAILY BEAST
You'd think that when you get the pick of the litter, the litter would be great.
Remember when Chandler was sexually attracted to sharks and Phoebe raised a litter of baby rats?
Bucking and running into the forest, the deer collapsed dead in a litter of leaves.
Having rested for two days we again moved forward, Mrs. Baker being carried on a litter.In the Heart of Africa|Samuel White Baker
At the next dlitement the first net is found under the litter.The Insect World|Louis Figuier
Cinna gave command to carry the litter nearer the place of torment.Let us follow Him|Henryk Sienkiewicz
Natasha runs across the warm planks, as yet unswept of dust and litter.The Old House and Other Tales|Feodor Sologub
Then, with a pine branch, he swept out the place, cleaned the bunk thoroughly and cleared the litter from the floors.Louisiana Lou|William West Winter
British Dictionary definitions for litter
- small refuse or waste materials carelessly dropped, esp in public places
- (as modifier)litter bin
Word Origin for litter
Word Origin and History for litter (1 of 2)
c.1300, "a bed," also "bed-like vehicle carried on men's shoulders" (early 14c.), from Anglo-French litere "portable bed," Old French litiere "litter, stretcher, bier; straw, bedding," from Medieval Latin lectaria "litter" (altered in French by influence of lit "bed"), from Latin lectus "bed, couch," from PIE *legh-to-, from root *legh- "to lie" (see lie (v.2)).
Meaning extended early 15c. to "straw used for bedding" (early 14c. in Anglo-French) and late 15c. to "offspring of an animal at one birth" (in one bed); sense of "scattered oddments, disorderly debris" is first attested 1730, probably from Middle English verb literen "provide with bedding" (late 14c.), with notion of strewing straw. Litter by 19c. had come to mean both the straw bedding and the animal waste in it after use.