adjective Archaic.

paltry; petty; mean.

Origin of pelting

1530–40; perhaps dial. pelt rags, rubbish (akin to Danish pjalt rag) + -ing2. See paltry
Related formspelt·ing·ly, adverb



verb (used with object)

to attack or assail with repeated blows or with missiles.
to throw (missiles).
to drive by blows or missiles: The child pelted the cows home from the fields.
to assail vigorously with words, questions, etc.
to beat or rush against with repeated forceful blows: The wind and rain pelted the roofs and walls of the houses for four days.

verb (used without object)

to strike blows; beat with force or violence.
to throw missiles.
to hurry.
to beat or pound unrelentingly: The wind, rain, and snow pelted against the castle walls.
to cast abuse.


the act of pelting.
a vigorous stroke; whack.
a blow with something thrown.
an unrelenting or repeated beating, as of rain or wind.

Origin of pelt

First recorded in 1490–1500; origin uncertain
Related formsun·pelt·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pelting

Contemporary Examples of pelting

Historical Examples of pelting

British Dictionary definitions for pelting




(tr) to throw (missiles) at (a person)
(tr) to hurl (insults) at (a person)
(intr; foll by along, over, etc) to move rapidly; hurry
(intr often foll by down) to rain heavily


a blow
speed (esp in the phrase at full pelt)
Derived Formspelter, noun

Word Origin for pelt

C15: of uncertain origin, perhaps from pellet




the skin of a fur-bearing animal, such as a mink, esp when it has been removed from the carcass
the hide of an animal, stripped of hair and ready for tanning

Word Origin for pelt

C15: perhaps back formation from peltry
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 pelting



"to strike" (with something), c.1500, of unknown origin; perhaps from early 13c. pelten "to strike," variant of pilten "to thrust, strike," from an unrecorded Old English *pyltan, from Medieval Latin *pultiare, from Latin pultare "to beat, knock, strike." Or from Old French peloter "to strike with a ball," from pelote "ball" (see pellet (n.)) [Klein]. Watkins says the source is Latin pellere "to push, drive, strike." Related: Pelted; pelting.



"skin of a fur-bearing animal," early 15c., of uncertain origin, perhaps a contraction of pelet (late 13c. in Anglo-Latin), from Old French pelete "fine skin, membrane," diminutive of pel "skin," from Latin pellis "skin, hide" (see film (n.)). Or perhaps the source of the English word is Anglo-French pelterie, Old French peletrie "fur skins," from Old French peletier "furrier," from pel.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper