|Origin:||back 'bat' (14-16 centuries), probably from a Scandinavian language.|
|Origin:||Old English batt|
bat1 S3 [countable]
a small animal like a mouse with wings that flies around at night ➔ fruit bat
a long wooden stick with a special shape that is used in some sports and games:
a baseball bat
a cricket bat
b) British English
a round flat piece of wood with a handle, used to hit a ball in table tennis [= paddle American English]
to be the person who is trying to hit the ball in a game of baseball
4 British English informal
to do something without being told to do it:
She went to see a solicitor off her own bat.
5 American English informal
to do something immediately:
He said yes right off the bat.
I drove like a bat out of hell to the hospital.
an unpleasant old woman