[ pith-ee ]
See synonyms for: pithypithiness on Thesaurus.com

adjective,pith·i·er, pith·i·est.
  1. brief, forceful, and meaningful in expression; full of vigor, substance, or meaning; terse; forcible: a pithy observation.

  2. of, like, or abounding in pith.

Origin of pithy

Middle English word dating back to 1300–50; see origin at pith, -y1

Other words for pithy

Other words from pithy

  • pith·i·ly, adverb
  • pith·i·ness, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use pithy in a sentence

  • Poeta nascitur non fit, to quote the old Latin saying, which puts the matter much more pithily than Moore.

  • It was familiar to the Scholastics, and it was pithily formulated by Suarez as, "Public is to be preferred to private good."

  • Thus pithily wrote Henry Thoreau, the quaint philosopher, in his little shack by the beautiful Walden pool.

    The Fourth Watch | H. A. Cody
  • Indeed, he was more than a husband: he was, as an intimate friend once pithily remarked, a very mother to her.

    George Eliot | Mathilde Blind

British Dictionary definitions for pithy


/ (ˈpɪθɪ) /

adjectivepithier or pithiest
  1. terse and full of meaning or substance

  2. of, resembling, or full of pith

Derived forms of pithy

  • pithily, adverb
  • pithiness, noun

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