or piss-ant

[ pis-ant ]
/ ˈpɪsˌænt /


Slang: Vulgar. a person or thing of no value or consequence; a despicable person or thing.
Obsolete. an ant.


Slang: Vulgar. insignificant or worthless.

Nearby words

  1. piss off,
  2. piss-poor,
  3. piss-pot,
  4. piss-take,
  5. piss-up,
  6. pissarro,
  7. pissarro, camille,
  8. pissed,
  9. pissed off,
  10. pisser

Origin of pissant

1655–65, in sense “ant”; piss + ant, probably orig. on the model of pismire

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for pissant


/ (ˈpɪsænt) US informal /


an insignificant or contemptible person


insignificant or contemptible

Word Origin for pissant

C17: from piss + ant

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 pissant



1660s, "an ant," from first element of pismire (q.v.) + ant. Meaning "contemptible, insignificant person" is from 1903.

"[B]y sun-down [the gals] come pourin out of the woods like pissants out of an old log when tother end's afire." ["Dick Harlan's Tennessee Frolic," in collection "A Quarter Race in Kentucky," Philadelphia, 1846]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper