[ peet-suh ]
/ ˈpit sə /


a flat, open-faced baked pie of Italian origin, consisting of a thin layer of bread dough topped with spiced tomato sauce and cheese, often garnished with anchovies, sausage slices, mushrooms, etc.

Nearby words

  1. pizarro,
  2. pizarro, francisco,
  3. pizazz,
  4. pize,
  5. pizz.,
  6. pizzazz,
  7. pizzeria,
  8. pizzicato,
  9. pizzle,
  10. pièce d'occasion

Origin of pizza

1930–35; < Italian pizza (variant pitta), perhaps ultimately < Greek; Cf. pḗtea bran, pētítēs bran bread

Also called pizza pie. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pizza

British Dictionary definitions for pizza


/ (ˈpiːtsə) /


a dish of Italian origin consisting of a baked disc of dough covered with cheese and tomatoes, usually with the addition of mushrooms, anchovies, sausage, or ham

Word Origin for pizza

C20: from Italian, perhaps from Vulgar Latin picea (unattested), from Latin piceus relating to pitch ²; perhaps related to Modern Greek pitta cake

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 pizza



1935, from Italian pizza, originally "cake, tart, pie," of uncertain origin. The 1907 "Vocabolario Etimologico della Lingua Italiana" reports it is said to be from dialectal pinza "clamp" (from Latin pinsere "to pound, stamp"). Klein suggests a connection via loan-translation with Medieval Greek pitta "cake, pie," from Greek pitta "pitch" (cf. Latin adjective piceus "of pitch"). See also pita.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper