[ spit ]
See synonyms for: spitspatspitting on Thesaurus.com

verb (used without object),spit or spat, spit·ting.
  1. to eject saliva from the mouth; expectorate.

  2. to express hatred, contempt, etc., by or as if by ejecting saliva from the mouth.

  1. to sputter: grease spitting on the fire.

  2. to fall in scattered drops or flakes, as rain or snow.

verb (used with object),spit or spat, spit·ting.
  1. to eject from the mouth: The children were spitting watermelon seeds over the fence.

  2. to throw out or emit like saliva: The kettle spits boiling water over the stove.

  1. to set a flame to.

  1. saliva, especially when ejected.

  2. the act of spitting.

  1. Entomology.Also called spittle . the frothy secretion exuded by spittlebugs.

  2. a light fall of rain or snow.

Verb Phrases
  1. spit up, to vomit; throw up: The wounded soldier spat up blood.If you jostle the baby, she'll spit up.

Idioms about spit

  1. spit and image, Informal. exact likeness; counterpart: Hunched over his desk, pen in hand, he was the spit and image of his father at work.: Also spitting image, spit 'n' image.

Origin of spit

First recorded before 950; Middle English verb spitten, spit(te), Old English spyttan, spittan; cognate with Old Norse spýta, German (dialect) spitzen “to spit”; the noun is derivative of the verb

Other words for spit

Other words from spit

  • spitlike, adjective

Other definitions for spit (2 of 2)

[ spit ]

  1. a pointed rod or bar for thrusting through and holding meat that is to be cooked before or over a fire.

  2. any of various rods, pins, or the like used for particular purposes.

  1. a narrow point of land projecting into the water.

  2. a long, narrow shoal extending from the shore.

verb (used with object),spit·ted, spit·ting.
  1. to pierce, stab, or transfix, as with a spit; impale on something sharp.

  2. to thrust a spit into or through.

Origin of spit

First recorded before 1000; Middle English spit(e), spitte, Old English spitu; cognate with Middle Dutch, Middle Low German spit, spet, Old High German spiz “spit”; akin to Old Norse spīta “wooden peg, spit”

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

How to use spit in a sentence

  • The meat is cut in pellets, spitted on rods six or eight inches long, and lain over the glowing charcoal embers.

    War in the Garden of Eden | Kermit Roosevelt
  • I will have the first man spitted with arrows who disobeys—aye, or takes more upon himself than simple obedience to orders.

    Joan of the Sword Hand | S(amuel) R(utherford) Crockett
  • He was a very valiant man, but at the battle of Brignais he was spitted through the body by a Hainault man-at-arms.

    The White Company | Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Then these pieces were spitted on the ends of sharp points of hard wood and skillfully broiled or toasted in the hot flames.

    Algonquin Indian Tales | Egerton R. Young
  • I set to work on one of the turkeys, and spitted such a quantity of the meat, fat and lean, that I was obliged to laugh at myself.

British Dictionary definitions for spit (1 of 3)


/ (spɪt) /

verbspits, spitting, spat or spit
  1. (intr) to expel saliva from the mouth; expectorate

  2. (intr) informal to show disdain or hatred by spitting

  1. (of a fire, hot fat, etc) to eject (fragments of coal, sparks, etc) violently and with an explosive sound; splutter

  2. (intr) to rain very lightly

  3. (tr often foll by out) to eject or discharge (something) from the mouth: he spat the food out; to spit blood

  4. (tr often foll by out) to utter (short sharp words or syllables), esp in a violent manner

  5. spit chips Australian slang to be very angry: Also (NZ): spit tacks

  6. spit it out! British informal a command given to someone that he should speak forthwith

  1. another name for spittle

  2. a light or brief fall of rain, snow, etc

  1. the act or an instance of spitting

  2. informal, mainly British another word for spitting image

Origin of spit

Old English spittan; related to spǣtan to spit, German dialect spitzen

Derived forms of spit

  • spitter, noun

British Dictionary definitions for spit (2 of 3)


/ (spɪt) /

  1. a pointed rod on which meat is skewered and roasted before or over an open fire

  2. Also called: rotisserie, rotating spit a similar device rotated by electricity or clockwork, fitted onto a cooker

  1. an elongated often hooked strip of sand or shingle projecting from the shore, deposited by longshore drift, and usually above water

verbspits, spitting or spitted
  1. (tr) to impale on or transfix with or as if with a spit

Origin of spit

Old English spitu; related to Old High German spiz spit, Norwegian spit tip

British Dictionary definitions for spit (3 of 3)


/ (spɪt) /

  1. the depth of earth cut by a spade; a spade's depth

Origin of spit

C16: from Middle Dutch and Middle Low German spit

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