Sense: 1-3, 7-12
|Origin:||Old English bita 'piece bitten off, small piece of food'|
|Origin:||Old English bite 'act of biting'|
a small piece of something
bits of broken glass
He wedged the door open with a bit of wood.
break/rip/shake etc something to bits
The aircraft was blown to bits.
He's taken the engine to bits.
fall/come to bits
The old house was falling to bits.
a part of something larger:
partBritish English informal
This is the boring bit.
We did the last bit of the journey on foot.
Did you like the bit about the monkey?
3 British English informal
very much or extremely:
Mark's a darling, I love him to bits.
thrilled/chuffed/pleased to bits
I've always wanted a car, so I'm thrilled to bits.
the smallest unit of information that a computer uses:
a 32-bit processor
the sharp part of a tool for cutting or making holes:
a drill bit
the metal bar attached to a horse's bridle that is put into its mouth and used to control it
➔ be champing at the bitat champ1 (2)
7 also bits and bobs British English informal
any small things of various kinds:
Let me get all my bits and pieces together.
to do a fair share of the work, effort etc that is needed to achieve something good or important:
Everyone should do their bit for the environment.
9 British English take the bit between your teeth American English
to do something or deal with something in a very determined way, so that you are not likely to stop until it is done
a) American English informal
25 cents or 50 cents
b) PEC British English old-fashioned
a small coin
11 British English informal
to criticize something strongly:
The critics pulled his new play to bits.
used to mean a kind of behaviour or experience that is typical of someone or something
the (whole) student/movie star/travelling etc bit
Then she gave us the concerned mother bit.
to be extremely upset because something unpleasant or disappointing has happened:
be in bitsBritish English spoken informal
She was in bits after the race, and looked totally gutted.