\ ˈsit How to pronounce sit (audio) \
sat\ ˈsat How to pronounce sat (audio) \; sitting

Definition of sit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to rest on the buttocks or haunches sit in a chair often used with down
2 : to occupy a place as a member of an official body sit in Congress
3 : to hold a session : be in session for official business
4 : to cover eggs for hatching : brood
5a : to take a position for having one's portrait painted or for being photographed
b : to serve as a model
6 archaic : to have one's dwelling place : dwell
7a : to lie or hang relative to a wearer the collar sits awkwardly
b : to affect one with or as if with weight the food sat heavily on his stomach
8 : lie, rest a kettle sitting on the stove
9a : to have a location the house sits well back from the road
b of wind : to blow from a certain direction
10 : to remain inactive or quiescent the car sits in the garage
11 : to take an examination
12 : babysit
13 : to please or agree with one used with with and an adverbthe decision did not sit well with me

transitive verb

1 : to cause to be seated : place on or in a seat often used with down
2 : to sit on (eggs)
3 : to keep one's seat on sit a horse
4 : to provide seats or seating room for
sit on
1 : to hold deliberations concerning
3 : to delay action or decision concerning
4 : to wait or be ready for (a specific pitch) in baseball
sit on one's hands
1 : to withhold applause : fail to show approval or enthusiasm
2 : to fail to take expected or appropriate action
sit pretty
: to be in a highly favorable situation
sit tight
1 : to maintain one's position without change
2 : to remain quiet in or as if in hiding
sit under
: to attend religious service under the instruction or ministrations of also : to attend the classes or lectures of



Definition of sit (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the manner in which a garment fits
2 : an act or period of sitting

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Synonyms for sit

Synonyms: Verb

  • set
  • [chiefly dialect]
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Examples of sit in a Sentence

Verb He was sitting in a chair next to the window. She sat across from me during dinner. The children sat cross-legged on the floor playing a game. Are you going to sit there and watch TV all day? Don't just sit there—do something! She walked around the table and sat across from me. She sat the toddler in the chair. The cat likes to sit by the window. The bird sat on the ledge. The limousine is sitting outside.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In other words, submarines with the LAB are better at sitting and quietly listening for the sounds of enemy warships. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Navy Signs Up for 9 New Nuclear Submarines," 3 Dec. 2019 With that application, the acid can penetrate into the papillary dermis (the uppermost layer of the dermis, which sits below the epidermis). Farwa Shah, SELF, "10 Things You Should Know Before Getting a Glycolic Acid Peel," 3 Dec. 2019 In a matter of weeks, Bolles sat for a deposition with attorneys representing the phone company and the bank., "The story that haunted Don Bolles isn't the story most people think they know," 3 Dec. 2019 The scene depicts two soldiers sitting at a table and smoking, joined by a woman and a young girl who carries a container of hot coal to light the men’s pipes. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "New Exhibition Leads to Discovery of Dutch Painter’s Signature and Fingerprint," 2 Dec. 2019 The same thing goes for sitting around and waiting for opportunities to come to you. Adam Schubak, Redbook, "Things I Learned About Life Over the Past Decade," 27 Nov. 2019 Reyes, 29, sits fourth in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie light heavyweight rankings. Danny Segura, MMA Junkie, "Jon Jones to defend UFC light heavyweight title vs. Dominick Reyes on Feb. 8," 22 Nov. 2019 Keep scrolling to see the three-bedroom, four-bathroom home that sits on 10 acres within the private equestrian community of Leatherwood Mountains (adjoining properties, with a total of three homes on 40 acres, are also for sale). Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, "North Carolina Mountain Home with Waterfall Running Through the Yard Hits Market for $1,199,000," 20 Nov. 2019 One advantage to being in the field so early was that great problems were sitting there. Quanta Magazine, "The Architect of Modern Algorithms," 20 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In addition to the sit-down dinners, volunteers will deliver holiday meals to needy residents in Quincy, Milton, Weymouth, Braintree, Randolph, Holbrook, Hingham, Hull, and Cohasset., "In addition to the sit-down dinners, volunteers will deliver holiday meals to needy residents in Quincy, Milton, Weymouth, Braintree, Randolph, Holbrook, Hingham, Hull, and Cohasset.," 21 Nov. 2019 In November 2018, Trump cut a deal to provide written testimony to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, after Mueller repeatedly attempted to get Trump to participate in a sit-down interview. Abby Vesoulis, Time, "Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton Also Pushed Back on Impeachment Investigations. But Trump Is Taking it a Step Further," 19 Nov. 2019 But his sit-down with Madagascar’s president — Mr. Prigozhin by his side — points to his involvement in Russia’s electoral interference in even the smallest, most remote countries. Michael Schwirtz, New York Times, "How Russia Meddles Abroad for Profit: Cash, Trolls and a Cult Leader," 11 Nov. 2019 For the full sit-down experience, get a table in the large dining room at Vue Kitchen, overlooking the water. Gregory Thomas,, "One Day, One Place: Sonoma County’s remote coast," 25 Oct. 2019 The results haven’t been snappy viral hits but chatty, ten-minute-long sit-downs, big on familiarity and comic relief. Eric Lach, The New Yorker, "“We’re in the Business of Stopping Thumbs”: NowThis News and the Politics of Social Video," 10 Oct. 2019 Despite its chefs’ fine-dining credentials, Blade 1936 is a casual sit-down restaurant with small plates priced from $8 to $12, pizzas from $13 to $15, build-your-own pasta dishes for $14.50 and large plates from $13.40 to $26. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Newspaper’s history celebrated at Blade 1936 restaurant in Oceanside," 25 Sep. 2019 Some 200 high school students staged a sit-in Saturday at a downtown public square. Time, "Conflict Breaks Out in Hong Kong Mall Amid Counter Protests," 14 Sep. 2019 Dozens of demonstrators were arrested during a sit-in at a Microsoft store in New York on Saturday. CBS News, "Dozens arrested during ICE protest at New York Microsoft store," 14 Sep. 2019

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

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First Known Use of sit


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


1776, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sit


Middle English sitten, from Old English sittan; akin to Old High German sizzen to sit, Latin sedēre, Greek hezesthai to sit, hedra seat

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Time Traveler for sit

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for sit

Last Updated

7 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Sit.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 8 December 2019.

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More Definitions for sit


How to pronounce sit (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sit

: to be in a position in which your bottom is resting on a chair, the ground, etc., especially with your back upright
: to begin to sit : to put yourself in a sitting position
: to cause (someone) to be seated : to put (someone) in a sitting position


\ ˈsit How to pronounce sit (audio) \
sat\ ˈsat \; sitting

Kids Definition of sit

1 : to rest upon the part of the body where the hips and legs join : to rest on the buttocks or hindquarters We sat and waited on a bench. The dog sat by the fire.
2 : to put the buttocks down on a surface I sat down to write a letter.
3 : to cause to be seated He sat the baby in the chair.
4 : perch entry 2 The bird sat on a branch.
5 : to be located or stay in a place or position A vase sits on the table.
6 : to provide seats for The car sits five.
7 : to hold a place as a member of an official group She was elected to sit in Congress.
8 : to hold a session The court sat last month.
9 : to pose for a portrait or photograph
10 : babysit
sat; sitting

Legal Definition of sit

1 : to occupy a place as a member of an official or formal body sit in Congress sit on a board of directors
2 : to hold a session : conduct official business the court sits in the state capital

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More from Merriam-Webster on sit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sit

Spanish Central: Translation of sit

Nglish: Translation of sit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sit

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


to constrict the range or activity of

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