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See more synonyms for set-to on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural set-tos.
  1. a usually brief, sharp fight or argument.
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Origin of set-to

First recorded in 1735–45; noun use of verb phrase set to
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for set-to

Historical Examples

  • Went to the chapel last night, I understand, and he and dad had a set-to.

    Keziah Coffin

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Cut in Miss Hawtry at the second set-to of Harriet and aunt.

    Blue-grass and Broadway

    Maria Thompson Daviess

  • But that was all like playing skretch-cradle to our set-to last night in the dark.

    Fix Bay'nets

    George Manville Fenn

  • But there can be no question about the outcome of such a set-to.

  • The set-to you had about the Indians' right to hunt pleased us both.

    The Eagle's Heart

    Hamlin Garland

Word Origin and History for set-to


"bout, fight," 1743, originally pugilistic slang, from verbal phrase; see set (v.) + to.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper