|Origin:||hitta 'to find, hit'|
hit1 S1 W2 past tense and past participle hit, present participle hitting
to touch someone or something quickly and hard with your hand, a stick etc:
touch somebody/something hard[transitive]
He raised the hammer and hit the bell.
hit somebody/something with something
The robbers hit him over the head with a baseball bat.
to move into something or someone quickly and with force:
crash into something[transitive]
The tanks exploded as the plane hit the ground.
He was hit by a car.
to move a part of your body quickly against something accidentally, causing pain [= bang]:
The ceiling's low, so be careful you don't hit your head.
hit something on/against something
She slipped and hit her head on the sidewalk.
if you hit a ball or other object, you make it move forward quickly by hitting it with a bat, stick etc [= strike]:
Hit the ball as hard as you can.
to get points by hitting a ball in a game such as baseball or cricket:
Last year, Griffey hit 49 home runs.
to press a part in a machine, car, etc to make it work:
Maria hit the brakes just in time.
to attack something or wound someone with a bomb, bullet etc:
Our ship was badly hit and sank within minutes.
A second shot hit her in the back.
The bomb failed to hit its target.
if something bad hits a place or a person, it suddenly happens and affects people badly:
affect badly[intransitive and transitive]
The village has been hit by a devastating drought.
Hurricane Louis is expected to hit at the weekend.
be badly/severely/hard hit
The company has been hard hit by the drop in consumer confidence.
The south of the country is the worst hit by the recession.
to experience trouble, problems etc
hit a snag/problems/a bad patch etc
My father hit a bad patch, he had to sell the house.
to reach a particular level or number:
reach a level/number[transitive]
Sales have hit the 1 million mark.
Earnings hit a peak in the early 1980s.
hit rock-bottom/an all-time low etc
Oil prices have hit rock-bottom.
if a fact hits you, you suddenly realize its importance and feel surprised or shocked:
It's impossible to pinpoint a moment when it hit me that I was 'a success'.
He was gone before they knew what had hit them (=realized what had happened).
if a smell or sight hits you, you suddenly smell or see it:
The smell of stale smoke hit him as he entered.
to arrive at a place:
They hit the main road two kilometres further on.
hit town American English
I'll look for work as soon as I hit town.
to begin a journey
if a product hits the shops, it becomes available to buy:
I managed to get a copy of the book before it hit the shops.
to be reported widely on television, in newspapers etc:
The couple hit the headlines last year when their relationship broke down.
to start drinking too much alcohol regularly:
After his marriage failed, he hit the bottle big time.
to fall to the ground in order to avoid something dangerous:
My first instinct was to hit the dirt.
to suddenly not be able to make any progress:
I felt I'd hit a wall with my playing.
if a plan, project etc hits the buffers, it fails:
Croft's comeback hit the skids yesterday when she lost in the quarter-finals.
to upset or harm someone when they are already defeated
to do something that you know will upset someone in the most damaging way:
Hit your husband where it hurts - in his wallet!
if two people hit it off, they like each other as soon as they meet:
I knew you'd hit it off with Mike.
23 hit it big American English informal
to suddenly become very famous, successful, and rich:
The 25-year-old painter hopes to hit it big in New York.
to start doing something successfully without any delay:
Law graduates are expected to hit the ground running.
to win a lot of money
to have a big success:
Owens hit the jackpot in his first professional game with the Cowboys.
used to say that what someone has said is exactly right:
You've hit the nail on the head there, David.
if a remark, criticism etc about you hits home, you realize that it is true:
Graham didn't reply, but she could see her words had hit home.
if a blow or kick hits home, it hits the thing it is aimed at
to have exactly the good effect that you wanted, especially when you are hungry or thirsty
to be very angry:
Ranieri returned, saw the mess, and hit the roof.
30 hit the hay American English informal
to go to bed
➔ the shit hits the fanat shit2 (17)
➔ hit/strike paydirtat paydirtWORD FOCUS: hit
with your fist: punch, thump, bash
with your open hand as a punishment: smack, spank, slap
with a hammer: bang, hammer
in order to get attention: bang, knock, tap, hammer
accidentally: bump into, crash into, strike, bang, knock, collide (with)
hit backphrasal verb
hit back at
The actress hit back at claims that she had threatened a member of staff.
hit back with
United were a goal down, but hit back with an equalizer.
hit back by doing something
He hit back by calling his critics 'lazy'.
hit on somebody/somethingphrasal verb
1 also hit upon something
to have an idea or discover something suddenly or unexpectedly [= come up with]:
Then we hit on the idea of asking viewers to donate money over the Net.
2 American English informal
to talk to someone in a way that shows you are sexually attracted to them:
Dave has hit on most of the women in the department.
hit outphrasal verb
When he felt someone grab him, he hit out wildly.
hit out at somebody/somethingphrasal verb
also hit out against somebody/something
to express strong disapproval of someone or something [= attack]:
The bishop hit out at the government's policy on the homeless.
hit somebody with somethingphrasal verb
to tell someone something interesting, exciting, or shocking:
The next morning, Steve hit me with the truth.
2 American English
to punish or try to harm someone by doing something that will cause problems for them:
The next day, we found they'd hit us with a lawsuit.
hit somebody up for somethingphrasal verb
Did he hit you up for cash again?