sit

1
[sit]

verb (used without object), sat or (Archaic) sate; sat or (Archaic) sit·ten; sit·ting.

verb (used with object), sat or (Archaic) sate; sat or (Archaic) sit·ten; sit·ting.

Verb Phrases


Idioms

    sit on one's hands,
    1. to fail to applaud.
    2. to fail to take appropriate action.
    sit pretty, Informal. to be in a comfortable situation: He's been sitting pretty ever since he got that new job.
    sit tight, to bide one's time; take no action: I'm going to sit tight till I hear from you.

Origin of sit

1
before 900; Middle English sitten, Old English sittan; cognate with Dutch zitten, German sitzen, Old Norse sitja; akin to Gothic sitan, Latin sedēre, Greek hézesthai (base hed-); cf. set, sedate, cathedral, nest
Can be confusedset sit (see usage note at set)

Synonyms for sit

Usage note

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

British Dictionary definitions for sit pretty

SIT

abbreviation for

stay in touch

sit

verb sits, sitting or sat (mainly intr)

(also tr; when intr, often foll by down, in, or on) to adopt or rest in a posture in which the body is supported on the buttocks and thighs and the torso is more or less uprightto sit on a chair; sit a horse
(tr) to cause to adopt such a posture
(of an animal) to adopt or rest in a posture with the hindquarters lowered to the ground
(of a bird) to perch or roost
(of a hen or other bird) to cover eggs to hatch them; brood
to be situated or located
(of the wind) to blow from the direction specified
to adopt and maintain a posture for one's portrait to be painted, etc
to occupy or be entitled to a seat in some official capacity, as a judge, elected representative, etc
(of a deliberative body) to be convened or in session
to remain inactive or unusedhis car sat in the garage for a year
to rest or lie as specifiedthe nut was sitting so awkwardly that he couldn't turn it
(of a garment) to fit or hang as specifiedthat dress sits well on you
to weigh, rest, or lie as specifiedgreatness sits easily on him
(tr) mainly British to take (an examination)he's sitting his bar finals
(usually foll by for) mainly British to be a candidate (for a qualification)he's sitting for a BA
(intr; in combination) to look after a specified person or thing for someone elsegranny-sit
(tr) to have seating capacity for
sitting pretty informal well placed or established financially, socially, etc
sit tight
  1. to wait patiently; bide one's time
  2. to maintain one's position, stand, or opinion firmly

Word Origin for sit

Old English sittan; related to Old Norse sitja, Gothic sitan, Old High German sizzen, Latin sedēre to sit, Sanskrit sīdati he sits
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 sit pretty

sit

v.

Old English sittan "to occupy a seat, be seated, sit down, seat oneself; remain, continue; settle, encamp, occupy; lie in wait; besiege" (class V strong verb; past tense sæt, past participle seten), from Proto-Germanic *setjan (cf. Old Saxon sittian, Old Norse sitja, Danish sidde, Old Frisian sitta, Middle Dutch sitten, Dutch zitten, Old High German sizzan, German sitzen, Gothic sitan), from PIE root *sed- (1) "to sit" (see sedentary).

With past tense sat, formerly also set, now restricted to dialect, and sate, now archaic; and past participle sat, formerly sitten. In reference to a legislative assembly, from 1510s. Meaning "to baby-sit" is recorded from 1966.

To sit back "be inactive" is from 1943. To sit on one's hands was originally "to withhold applause" (1926); later, "to do nothing" (1959). To sit around "be idle, do nothing" is 1915, American English. To sit out "not take part" is from 1650s. Sitting pretty is from 1916.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with sit pretty

sit pretty

see sitting pretty.

sit

In addition to the idioms beginning with sit

  • sit at one's feet
  • sit back
  • sit bolt upright
  • sit by
  • sit down
  • sit in
  • sit on
  • sit on one's hands
  • sit out
  • sit pretty
  • sit through
  • sit tight
  • sit up
  • sit well with

also see:

  • at a sitting
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.