a set of clothing, armor, or the like, intended for wear together.
a set of men's garments of the same color and fabric, consisting of trousers, a jacket, and sometimes a vest.
a similarly matched set consisting of a skirt and jacket, and sometimes a topcoat or blouse, worn by women.
any costume worn for some special activity: a running suit.
Slang. a business executive.
Law. the act, the process, or an instance of suing in a court of law; legal prosecution; lawsuit.
one of the four sets or classes (spades, hearts, diamonds, and clubs) into which a common deck of playing cards is divided.
the aggregate of cards belonging to one of these sets held in a player's hand at one time: Spades were his long suit.
one of various sets or classes into which less common decks of cards are divided, as lances, hammers, etc., found in certain decks formerly used or used in fortune telling.
suite ( defs 1–3, 5 ).
the wooing or courting of a woman: She rejected his suit.
the act of making a petition or an appeal.
a petition, as to a person of rank or station.
Also called set. Nautical. a complete group of sails for a boat.
one of the seven classes into which a standard set of 28 dominoes may be divided by matching the numbers on half the face of each: a three suit contains the 3-blank, 3-1, 3-2, 3-3, 3-4, 3-5, and 3-6. Since each such suit contains one of each of the other possible suits, only one complete suit is available per game.
verb (used with object)
to make appropriate, adapt, or accommodate, as one thing to another: to suit the punishment to the crime.
to be appropriate or becoming to: Blue suits you very well.
to be or prove satisfactory, agreeable, or acceptable to; satisfy or please: The arrangements suit me.
to provide with a suit, as of clothing or armor; clothe; array.
verb (used without object)
to be appropriate or suitable; accord.
to be satisfactory, agreeable, or acceptable.
Verb phrases
suit up, to dress in a uniform or special suit.
follow suit,
Cards. to play a card of the same suit as that led.
to follow the example of another: The girl jumped over the fence, and her playmates followed suit.

1250–1300; Middle English siute, sute, suite (noun) < Anglo-French, Old French, akin to sivre to follow. See sue, suite

suitlike, adjective
countersuit, noun
resuit, noun, verb (used with object)
undersuit, noun
undersuit, verb (used with object)

suit, suite. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
suit (suːt, sjuːt)
1.  any set of clothes of the same or similar material designed to be worn together, now usually (for men) a jacket with matching trousers or (for women) a jacket with matching or contrasting skirt or trousers
2.  (in combination) any outfit worn for a specific purpose: a spacesuit
3.  any set of items, such as the full complement of sails of a vessel or parts of personal armour
4.  any of the four sets of 13 cards in a pack of playing cards, being spades, hearts, diamonds, and clubs. The cards in each suit are two to ten, jack, queen, and king in the usual order of ascending value, with ace counting as either the highest or lowest according to the game
5.  a civil proceeding; lawsuit
6.  the act or process of suing in a court of law
7.  a petition or appeal made to a person of superior rank or status or the act of making such a petition
8.  slang a business executive or white-collar manager
9.  a man's courting of a woman
10.  follow suit
 a.  to play a card of the same suit as the card played immediately before it
 b.  to act in the same way as someone else
11.  strong suit, strongest suit something that one excels in
12.  to make or be fit or appropriate for: that dress suits you
13.  to meet the requirements or standards (of)
14.  to be agreeable or acceptable to (someone)
15.  suit oneself to pursue one's own intentions without reference to others
[C13: from Old French sieute set of things, from sivre to follow; compare sue]

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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Word Origin & History

c.1300, "attendance at court, the company attending," also their livery or uniform, via Anglo-Fr. siwte, from O.Fr. suitte "attendance, act of following," from Gallo-Romance *sequita, fem. of *sequitus, from L. secutus, pp. of sequi "to attend, follow" (see sequel). Meaning
"application to a court for justice, lawsuit" is first recorded early 15c. Meaning "set of clothes to be worn together" is attested from early 15c., from notion of the livery or uniform of court attendants (a sense recorded from late 13c.). As a derisive term for "businessman," it dates from 1979. Meaning "set of playing cards bearing the same symbol" is first attested 1520s, also from the notion of livery. Hence, to follow suit (1670s), which is from card playing. Suitcase first recorded 1902, originally a case for holding a suit of clothes.

"be agreeable or convenient," 1570s, from suit (n.), probably from the notion of "provide with a set of new clothes." Suitor "man who is courting a woman" is 1580s, from earlier notion of "adherent, follower" (late 14c.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Computing Dictionary

suit definition

1. Ugly and uncomfortable "business clothing" often worn by non-hackers. Invariably worn with a "tie", a strangulation device that partially cuts off the blood supply to the brain. It is thought that this explains much about the behaviour of suit-wearers.
2. A person who habitually wears suits, as distinct from a techie or hacker.
See loser, burble, management, Stupids, SNAFU principle, and brain-damaged.
[Jargon File]

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


In addition to the idioms beginning with suit, also see birthday suit; empty suit; follow suit; long suit; strong point (suit).

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in dress design, matching set of clothes consisting, for example, of a coat, vest, and trousers. The shift in Western masculine attire from the doublet (q.v.) to the present-day suit began in 1666 at the courts of Louis XIV of France and Charles II of England. The reformed style consisted of a long coat with wide, turned-back sleeves and a row of buttons down the front, some of which were left unbuttoned to reveal a vest (later called a waistcoat in England), an undergarment almost identical to the coat

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
This, by the way, explains the appeal of the military flight suit.
Their action to put the planet at risk involves us all, and probably a civil
  suit will get farther faster than a criminal one.
My parents have retired there and soon some family members followed suit.
With the money he bought himself a suit of cheap, flashy clothes.
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