spat

1 [spat]
noun
1.
a petty quarrel.
2.
a light blow; slap; smack.
verb (used without object), spatted, spatting.
3.
to engage in a petty quarrel or dispute.
4.
to splash or spatter; rain spatting against the window.
verb (used with object), spatted, spatting.
5.
to strike lightly; slap.

Origin:
1795–1805, Americanism; perhaps imitative


1. tiff, scrap, set-to.
Dictionary.com Unabridged

spat

2 [spat]
verb
a simple past tense and past participle of spit1.

spat

3 [spat]
noun
a short gaiter worn over the instep and usually fastened under the foot with a strap, worn especially in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Origin:
1795–1805; short for spatterdash

spat

4 [spat]
noun
1.
the spawn of an oyster or similar shellfish.
2.
young oysters collectively.
3.
a young oyster.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English; origin uncertain

spit

1 [spit]
verb (used without object), spit or spat, spitting.
1.
to eject saliva from the mouth; expectorate.
2.
to express hatred, contempt, etc., by or as if by ejecting saliva from the mouth.
3.
to sputter: grease spitting on the fire.
4.
to fall in scattered drops or flakes, as rain or snow.
verb (used with object), spit or spat, spitting.
5.
to eject from the mouth: The children were spitting watermelon seeds over the fence.
6.
to throw out or emit like saliva: The kettle spits boiling water over the stove.
7.
to set a flame to.
noun
8.
saliva, especially when ejected.
9.
the act of spitting.
10.
Entomology. Also called spittle. the frothy secretion exuded by spittlebugs.
11.
a light fall of rain or snow.
Verb phrases
12.
spit up, to vomit; throw up: The wounded soldier spat up blood. If you jostle the baby, she'll spit up.
Idioms
13.
spit and image, Informal. exact likeness; counterpart: Hunched over his desk, pen in hand, he was the spit and image of his father at work. Also, spitting image, spit 'n' image.

Origin:
before 950; (v.) Middle English spitten, Old English spittan; cognate with German (dial.) spitzen to spit; akin to Old English spǣtan to spit, spātl spittle; (noun) Middle English, derivative of the v.

spitlike, adjective


3. spatter.

spit

2 [spit]
noun
1.
a pointed rod or bar for thrusting through and holding meat that is to be cooked before or over a fire.
2.
any of various rods, pins, or the like used for particular purposes.
3.
a narrow point of land projecting into the water.
4.
a long, narrow shoal extending from the shore.
verb (used with object), spitted, spitting.
5.
to pierce, stab, or transfix, as with a spit; impale on something sharp.
6.
to thrust a spit into or through.

Origin:
before 1000; Middle English spite, Old English spitu; cognate with Middle Dutch, Middle Low German spit, spet, Old High German spiz spit; akin to Old Norse spīta peg

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
spat1 (spæt)
 
n
1.  rare a slap or smack
2.  a slight quarrel
 
vb , spats, spatting, spatted
3.  rare to slap (someone)
4.  (US), (Canadian), (NZ) (intr) to have a slight quarrel
 
[C19: probably imitative of the sound of quarrelling]

spat2 (spæt)
 
vb
a past tense and past participle of spit

spat3 (spæt)
 
n
another name for gaiter
 
[C19: short for spatterdash]

spat4 (spæt)
 
n
1.  a larval oyster or similar bivalve mollusc, esp when it settles to the sea bottom and starts to develop a shell
2.  such oysters or other molluscs collectively
 
[C17: from Anglo-Norman spat; perhaps related to spit1]

spit1 (spɪt)
 
vb (often foll by out) (often foll by out) , spits, spitting, spat, spit
1.  (intr) to expel saliva from the mouth; expectorate
2.  informal (intr) to show disdain or hatred by spitting
3.  (of a fire, hot fat, etc) to eject (fragments of coal, sparks, etc) violently and with an explosive sound; splutter
4.  (intr) to rain very lightly
5.  to eject or discharge (something) from the mouth: he spat the food out; to spit blood
6.  to utter (short sharp words or syllables), esp in a violent manner
7.  slang (Austral) spit chips Also (NZ): spit tacks to be very angry
8.  informal (Brit) spit it out! a command given to someone that he should speak forthwith
 
n
9.  another name for spittle
10.  a light or brief fall of rain, snow, etc
11.  the act or an instance of spitting
12.  informal chiefly (Brit) another word for spitting image
 
[Old English spittan; related to spǣtan to spit, German dialect spitzen]
 
'spitter1
 
n

spit2 (spɪt)
 
n
1.  a pointed rod on which meat is skewered and roasted before or over an open fire
2.  rotisserie, Also called: rotating spit a similar device rotated by electricity or clockwork, fitted onto a cooker
3.  an elongated often hooked strip of sand or shingle projecting from the shore, deposited by longshore drift, and usually above water
 
vb , spits, spitting, spitted
4.  (tr) to impale on or transfix with or as if with a spit
 
[Old English spitu; related to Old High German spiz spit, Norwegian spit tip]

spit3 (spɪt)
 
n
the depth of earth cut by a spade; a spade's depth
 
[C16: from Middle Dutch and Middle Low German spit]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

spat
"petty quarrel," 1804, Amer.Eng., of unknown origin; perhaps somehow imitative (cf. spat "smack, slap," attested from 1823).

spat
"short gaiter covering the ankle," 1779, shortening of spatterdash "long gaiter to keep trousers or stockings from being spattered with mud" (1687), from spatter and dash (v.).

spit
"expel saliva," O.E. spittan (Anglian), spætan (W.Saxon), from PIE *sp(y)eu-, of imitative origin (see spew). Not the usual O.E. word for this; spætlan (see spittle) and spiwan (see spew) are more common.
Meaning "to eject saliva (at someone or something) as a gesture of contempt" is in O.E. The noun is attested from c.1300. Meaning "the very likeness" is attested from 1602 (e.g. spitting image, attested from 1901); cf. Fr. craché in same sense. Military phrase spit and polish first recorded 1895. Spitball is from 1846 in the schoolboy sense, 1905 in the baseball sense.

spit
"sharp-pointed rod on which meat is roasted," O.E. spitu, from P.Gmc. *spituz (cf. M.Du. spit, Swed. spett, O.H.G. spiz, Ger. Spieß "spit," Ger. spitz "pointed"), from PIE *spei- "sharp point" (see spike (n.1)). This is also the source of the word meaning "sandy point"
(1670s). O.Fr. espois, Sp. espeto "spit" are Gmc. loan-words. The verb meaning "to put on a spit" is recorded from c.1200.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
But this process has been stymied by an ugly spat over the procedure for
  raising aid.
Most likely, the licensing spat will be resolved at some point because each
  party needs the other.
As they walked past, they spat on the incandescent figure.
The spat throughout the thread is hardly surprising.
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