• synonyms


See more synonyms for pip on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object), pipped, pip·ping.
  1. to peep or chirp.
  2. (of a young bird) to break out from the shell.
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verb (used with object), pipped, pip·ping.
  1. to crack or chip a hole through (the shell), as a young bird.
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Origin of pip4

First recorded in 1650–60; variant of peep2


verb (used with object), pipped, pip·ping. British Slang.
  1. to blackball.
  2. to defeat (an opponent).
  3. to shoot, especially to wound or kill by a gunshot.
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Origin of pip6

1875–80; perhaps special use of pip1, in metaphorical sense of a small ball
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for pipping

Historical Examples

  • As a rule it takes ducklings from 24 to 48 hours to hatch after the pipping first begins.

    Ducks and Geese

    Harry M. Lamon

  • He had at that time a pig which was ready for pipping; she had a litter of seven, and they all died.

    Animal Ghosts

    Elliott O'Donnell

  • The apparatus was later improved by Pipping, who used a diamond in place of the steel point.

British Dictionary definitions for pipping


  1. the seed of a fleshy fruit, such as an apple or pear
  2. any of the segments marking the surface of a pineapple
  3. a rootstock or flower of the lily of the valley or certain other plants
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Word Origin

C18: short for pippin


  1. a short high-pitched sound, a sequence of which can act as a time signal, esp on radio
  2. a radar blip
    1. a spot or single device, such as a spade, diamond, heart, or club on a playing card
    2. any of the spots on dice or dominoes
  3. Also called: star informal the emblem worn on the shoulder by junior officers in the British Army, indicating their rank
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verb pips, pipping or pipped
  1. (of a young bird)
    1. (intr)to chirp; peep
    2. to pierce (the shell of its egg) while hatching
  2. (intr) to make a short high-pitched sound
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Word Origin

C16 (in the sense: spot or speck); C17 (vb); C20 (in the sense: short high-pitched sound): of obscure, probably imitative origin; senses 1 and 5 are probably related to peep ²


  1. a contagious disease of poultry characterized by the secretion of thick mucus in the mouth and throat
  2. facetious, slang a minor human ailment
  3. British, Australian, NZ and Southern African slang a bad temper or depression (esp in the phrase give (someone) the pip)
  4. get the pip or have the pip NZ informal to sulk
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verb pips, pipping or pipped
  1. British slang to cause to be annoyed or depressed
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Word Origin

C15: from Middle Dutch pippe, ultimately from Latin pituita phlegm; see pituitary


verb pips, pipping or pipped (tr) British slang
  1. to wound or kill, esp with a gun
  2. to defeat (a person), esp when his success seems certain (often in the phrase pip at the post)
  3. to blackball or ostracize
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Word Origin

C19 (originally in the sense: to blackball): probably from pip ²
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 pipping



"seed of an apple," 1797, shortened form of pipin "seed of a fleshy fruit" (early 14c.), from Old French pepin (13c.), probably from a root *pipp-, expressing smallness (cf. Italian pippolo, Spanish pepita "seed, kernel").

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"disease of birds," late 14c., probably from Middle Dutch pippe "mucus," from West Germanic *pipit (cf. East Frisian pip, Middle High German pfipfiz, German Pips), an early borrowing from Vulgar Latin *pippita, unexplained alteration of Latin pituita "phlegm" (see pituitary).

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"spot on a playing card, etc." c.1600, peep, of unknown origin. Because of the original form, it is not considered as connected to pip (n.1). Related: Pips.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper