shit (shĭt) Vulgar Slang
v. shit also shat (shăt), shit·ting, shits
1. To defecate in (one's clothes or bed).
2. To tease or try to deceive.
2. The act or an instance of defecating.
3. shits Diarrhea. Used with the.
a. Something considered disgusting, of poor quality, foolish, or otherwise totally unacceptable.
b. A mean or contemptible person.
5. A narcotic or intoxicant, such as marijuana or heroin.
6. Things; items.
7. Foolish, deceitful, or boastful language.
8. Insolent talk or behavior.
9. Trouble or difficulty.
10. A small or worthless amount: He doesn't know shit.
11. Used for intensive effect in idioms such as scare the shit out of (someone) for scare (someone) very much.
Used to express surprise, anger, or extreme displeasure.
To treat with malice or extreme disrespect.
be the shit
To be excellent or impressive.
get (one's) shit together
To get organized; put one's affairs or possessions in order.
give a shit
To care the least bit.
1. Used to express disbelief.
2. Used to express contemptuous acknowledgment of the obvious.
shit bricks/a brick
To become extremely worried or frightened.
up shit creek (without a paddle)
In dire circumstances with no hope of help.
when the shit hits the fan
When the situation goes awry; when trouble starts.
[Middle English shitten, probably from Old English -sciten (as in besciten, covered with excrement), past participle of *scītan, to defecate; see skei- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.