1. A female canine animal, especially a dog.
2. Offensive A woman considered to be mean, overbearing, or contemptible.
3. Vulgar Slang
a. A prostitute considered in relation to a pimp.
b. A person in a subservient sexual role, especially an incarcerated male who provides sex to another male under threat of violence or in exchange for protection.
c. A person who is submissive to another, usually by performing menial or unpleasant tasks.
d. A man considered to be weak or contemptible.
4. Slang A complaint.
5. Slang Something very unpleasant or difficult: Fixing the faucet turned out to be a bitch.
v. bitched, bitch·ing, bitch·es
To complain; grumble.
To botch; bungle. Often used with up.
bitch out Slang
To reprimand loudly or harshly.
[Middle English bicche, from Old English bicce.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. 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.