[ sit-in ]
See synonyms for sit-in on
  1. any organized protest in which a group of people peacefully occupy and refuse to leave a premises: Sixty students staged a sit-in outside the dean's office.

  2. an organized passive protest, especially against racial segregation, in which the demonstrators occupy seats prohibited to them, as in restaurants and other public places.

Origin of sit-in

1955–60; noun use of verb phrase sit in (a place); cf. sit1, -in3

Words Nearby sit-in Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use sit-in in a sentence

  • This day sit-in-the-kitchen has uncovered his face before his father!'

  • I 'm tired of having you a sit-in-the-corner, watch-the-other-fellow-dance, male-wallflower proposition!

    Skinner's Dress Suit | Henry Irving Dodge

British Dictionary definitions for sit-in


  1. a form of civil disobedience in which demonstrators occupy seats in a public place and refuse to move as a protest

  2. another term for sit-down strike

verbsit in (intr, adverb)
  1. (often foll by for) to deputize (for)

  2. (foll by on) to take part (in) as a visitor or guest: we sat in on Professor Johnson's seminar

  1. to organize or take part in a sit-in

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with sit-in


Attend or take part as a visitor, as in My son's jazz group asked me to sit in tonight. It is often put as sit in on, as in They asked me to sit in on their poker game. [Mid-1800s]

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