hit

verb
\ ˈhit \
hit; hitting

Definition of hit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to reach with or as if with a sudden blow His mom told him to stop hitting his sister.
b : to come in quick forceful contact with the ball hit the window He was hit by a car. The tank was hit by enemy fire.
c : to strike (something, such as a ball) with an object (such as a bat, club, or racket) so as to impart or redirect motion hit a fastball into the outfield
2a : to cause to come into contact She accidentally hit her head getting into the car.
b : to deliver (something, such as a blow) by action
c : to apply forcefully or suddenly hit the brakes Will someone hit the lights?
3 : to affect especially detrimentally farmers hit by drought Many families were hit hard during the recession.
4 : to make a request of hit his friend for 10 dollars often used with up hit us up for some change
5 : to discover or meet especially by chance prospectors hitting gold hit a snowstorm while driving home hit a run of bad luck
6a : to accord with : suit hits public tastes
b : reach, attain prices hit a new high kept digging until he hit water She'll hit 50 on her next birthday.
c : to arrive or appear at, in, or on hit town the best time to hit the stores The newest issue hits newsstands tomorrow.
d of fish : to bite at or on will only hit live bait
e : to reflect accurately hit the right note
f : to reach or strike (something, such as a target) especially for a score in a game or contest couldn't seem to hit the basket
g baseball : bat sense 2b a player who can hit .300
7 : to indulge in excessively He repeatedly hit the bottle [=drank alcoholic beverages excessively] and, following a wild binge, was exiled to a remote post in the mountains …— Stanley Karnow
8 : to deal another card to (as in blackjack) hit me

intransitive verb

1a : to strike a blow boxers hitting furiously at each other
b : to arrive with a forceful effect like that of a blow the storm hit
2a : to come into contact with something the plate shattered when it hit
b : attack where the terrorists would hit next
c of a fish : strike sense 11b
d baseball : bat sense 1 next up to hit
3 : to succeed in attaining or coming up with something often used with on or upon hit on a solution
4 obsolete : to be in agreement : suit
5 of an internal combustion engine : to fire a quantity of mixed fuel and air in the cylinders (see cylinder sense 2b) the engine wouldn't hit
hit it big
: to achieve great success
hit it off
: to get along well : become friends they hit it off immediately
hit on
: to make especially sexual overtures to
hit the books
: to study especially with intensity
hit the fan
: to have a major usually undesirable impact
hit the ground running
: to begin or proceed quickly, energetically, or effectively
hit the hay or hit the sack
: to go to bed
hit the high points or hit the high spots
: to touch on or at the most important points or places
hit the jackpot
: to become notably and unexpectedly successful
hit the nail on the head
: to be exactly right
hit the road
: leave, travel also : to set out
hit the roof or hit the ceiling
: to give vent to a burst of anger or angry protest
hit the spot
: to give complete or special satisfaction used especially of food or drink
hit the wall
1 : to reach the point of physical exhaustion during strenuous activity
2 : to reach a limiting point or situation at which progress or success ceases

hit

noun

Definition of hit (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of striking or forcefully coming in contact with someone or something : an act or instance of hitting or being hit penalized for an illegal hit from behind The bunker took a direct hit from the bombers.
2a : a stroke of luck
b : a great success The show was a big hit. a compilation of the band's greatest hits The pony rides were a hit with the kids.
3 : a telling or critical remark
4 baseball : base hit
5 : a quantity of a drug ingested at one time took a hit of LSD
6 : a premeditated murder committed especially by a member of a crime syndicate (see syndicate entry 1 sense 3c) a hit on a rival gang leader
7 : an instance of connecting to a particular website a million hits per day
8 : a successful match in a search (as of a computer database or the Internet)

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from hit

Verb

hitter noun

Noun

hitless \ ˈhit-​ləs \ adjective

Examples of hit in a Sentence

Verb

She told her son to stop hitting his sister. She hit him hard with her purse. The boxers hit each other with their fists. The boxers were hitting furiously at each other. She hit the ball right to the shortstop. The ball hit the house. The plate shattered when it hit the floor. The tank was hit by enemy fire. He was hit by a car. The ship hit an iceberg.

Noun

The player was penalized for an illegal hit from behind. The torpedo made a direct hit. The pony ride was a big hit at the party.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Trouble is a spinoff of the network’s hit show, The Fosters and follows a series of young adults trying to make their way in Los Angeles. Megan Stein, Country Living, "'Last Man Standing' Star Molly McCook Is Now Starring on a Totally New TV Show," 9 Feb. 2019 Daimler AG lowered employee bonuses and cut its dividend for the first time in years Wednesday, after profits dropped by almost a third in 2018, hit by trade tensions, emissions issues and increased investment in future technologies. Max Bernhard, WSJ, "Daimler, Hit by Trade Tensions, Cuts Dividend and Bonuses," 6 Feb. 2019 Greece’s left-wing Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is trailing conservatives in opinion polls ahead of general elections this year, and has promised to relieve Greeks hardest hit by the crisis. Derek Gatopoulos, The Seattle Times, "Greece: strong interest in first bond sale since bailout end," 29 Jan. 2019 For me, my six-month car insurance payment hits in January, the homeowner’s bill for the entire year. Celeste Katz, Glamour, "These Women Are Still Waiting for Their Paycheck Because of the Government Shutdown," 11 Jan. 2019 The resort’s grounds, hard hit by Hurricane Maria last year, have seen the skillful reintroduction of more than 300,000 native plants. David Jefferys, Condé Nast Traveler, "Puerto Rico's Dorado Beach Is a Bit of Bali, Three Hours from Home," 12 Nov. 2018 The Warrenistas write: ... Knowlton confronted an inheritance tax that directly hit the property itself. James Freeman, WSJ, "Elizabeth Warren’s Unconstitutional Wealth Tax," 25 Jan. 2019 The Twelve followed two years later, and the last book of the trilogy, The City of Mirrors, hit shelves in 2016. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Here’s How to Watch ‘The Passage,’ the New Fox Show Everyone’s Talking About," 21 Jan. 2019 Scientists suspect that recent weather events, including the snowstorm that hit Washington, D.C., are just the beginning of the polar vortex’s freezing reign. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "What Is a Polar Vortex? The Frigid Weather Pattern Explained," 16 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

His highly imaginative designs ended up being something of a viral sensation—made from shrunken rubber Donald Trump masks, the shoes in particular were a runaway hit. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Born in Buffalo and Trained in London, Edwin Mohney Sources the Fabric for His Radical Ball Gowns at Kmart," 16 Feb. 2019 This mainland China chain has been a big hit around North America, drawing lines up to two hours long for its beef oil spicy broth and other soups. Tan Vinh, The Seattle Times, "Bellevue lands a famous, big-name hot-pot spot and 42 other new openings around the Seattle area," 13 Feb. 2019 In one test, a 25-pounder gun fired continuously at an advancing CDL tank, but was unable to score a hit due to the dazzling light. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "The Long, Weird History of Strobe Weapons," 11 Feb. 2019 Even though the show’s been a hit in the U.S., Comer hasn’t really been around to witness it. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Jodie Comer of 'Killing Eve' Is One of the Most Captivating Actresses of Her Time," 4 Jan. 2019 Right around the time Musk tweeted his first pledge to combat traffic with tunnels, several SpaceX employees were injured in two separate crashes—one of which was a harrowing high-speed hit-and-run. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "We don’t need more dedicated places where cars can go fast," 20 Dec. 2018 The rookie right-hander has not yet managed to pitch deep in a game, but performed well Saturday with two hits allowed in five scoreless innings, matching his career high for innings. Katherine Fominykh, baltimoresun.com, "Orioles ride rookie Yefry Ramírez to beat error-riddled Rangers, 1-0," 15 July 2018 Plantation sent 12 batters to the plate and unleashed nine hits in its final at-bat. Rick Menning, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Plantation, Coconut Creek All-Stars win Little League sectional semifinal games," 14 July 2018 For the first time in the game’s history, there are more strikeouts than hits and the ball is not in play (via walks, strikeouts and home runs) more than one-third of all plate appearances. Tom Verducci, SI.com, "The Star That Still Won't Shine: The Incredible, Unprecedented but Unseen Greatness of Mike Trout," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hit.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of hit

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hit

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English hyttan, probably from Old Norse hitta to meet with, hit

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hit

Statistics for hit

Last Updated

19 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hit

The first known use of hit was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hit

hit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of hit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move your hand, a bat, etc., quickly so that it touches someone or something in a forceful or violent way
: to cause (something, such as a ball) to move by hitting it forcefully with a bat, racket, etc.
: to touch (something or someone) in a forceful or violent way after moving at a high speed

hit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hit (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of hitting someone or something
used to describe being hit by something (such as a bullet, bomb, punch, etc.) usually used with take often used figuratively
: something that is very successful

hit

verb
\ ˈhit \
hit; hitting

Kids Definition of hit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to strike or be struck by (someone or something) forcefully
2 : to cause or allow (something) to come into contact with something He hit his head on the door.
3 : to affect or be affected by in a harmful or damaging way He was hit hard by the loss.
4 : occur sense 1 The storm hit without warning.
5 : to come upon by chance She hit upon the right answer.
6 : to arrive at Prices hit a new high.

Other Words from hit

hitter noun

hit

noun

Kids Definition of hit (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a blow striking an object aimed at Bombers scored a direct hit.
2 : something very successful The show is a hit.
3 : a batted baseball that enables the batter to reach base safely
4 : a match in a computer search The search produced over a thousand hits.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on hit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hit

Spanish Central: Translation of hit

Nglish: Translation of hit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hit for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hit

Comments on hit

What made you want to look up hit? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

excited commotion or publicity

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What did you just call me?! A Quiz

  • rows-of-various-emoji
  • If a member of the audience describes your speech as bombastic, does that person mean it is:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!