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nitwit

[nit-wit]
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noun
  1. a slow-witted, stupid, or foolish person.
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Origin of nitwit

1920–25; nit (< German; dialectal variant of nicht not) + wit1(in the sense of ‘intelligence’)

Synonyms

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fool, blockhead, dolt, dunce, booby.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for nitwit

nitwit

noun
  1. informal a foolish person
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Word Origin

C20: perhaps from nit 1 + wit 1
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

Word Origin and History for nitwit

n.

"stupid person," 1922, probably from nit "nothing," from dialectal German or Yiddish, from Middle Low German (see nix) + wit (n.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper