1 [twit]
verb (used with object), twitted, twitting.
to taunt, tease, ridicule, etc., with reference to anything embarrassing; gibe at. jeer at, mock, insult, deride.
to reproach or upbraid. chide, scold, rebuke, criticize, revile, castigate.
an act of twitting.
a derisive reproach; taunt; gibe.

1520–30; aphetic variant of obsolete atwite, Middle English atwiten, Old English ætwītan to taunt, equivalent to æt- at1 + wītan to blame Unabridged


2 [twit]
a weak or thin place in yarn caused by uneven spinning.

1810–20; origin uncertain


3 [twit]
noun Informal.
an insignificant, silly, or bothersome person: Pay no attention to that obnoxious little twit!

1920–25; perhaps orig. noun derivative of twit1, i.e., “one who twits others,” but altered in sense by association with expressive words with tw- (twaddle, twat, twerp, etc.) and by rhyme with nitwit


4 [twit]
noun Informal.
a confused, excited state: to be in a twit about company coming. dither, tizzy, stew.

probably shortened from twitter Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
twit1 (twɪt)
vb , twits, twitting, twitted
1.  (tr) to tease, taunt, or reproach, often in jest
2.  informal (US), (Canadian) a nervous or excitable state
3.  rare a reproach; taunt
[Old English ætwītan, from æt against + wītan to accuse; related to Old High German wīzan to punish]

twit2 (twɪt)
informal chiefly (Brit) a foolish or stupid person; idiot
[C19: from twit1 (originally in the sense: a person given to twitting)]

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

1530, aphetic form of atwite, from O.E. ætwitan "to blame, reproach," from æt "at" + witan "to blame," from P.Gmc. *witanan (cf. O.E. wite, O.S. witi, O.N. viti "punishment, torture;" O.H.G. wizzi "punishment," wizan "to punish;" Du. verwijten, O.H.G. firwizan, Ger. verweisen "to reproach,
reprove," Goth. fraweitan "to avenge"), from PIE base *weid- "to see." For sense evolution, cf. L. animadvertere, lit. "to give heed to, observe," later "to chastise, censure, punish." The noun meaning "foolish, stupid and ineffectual person" is first attested 1934 in British slang, popular 1950s-60s, crossed over to U.S. with British sitcoms. It probably developed from the verb sense of "reproach" but may be influenced by nitwit.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The film is a merciless, sometimes hilarious portrait of the aristocracy, though the earl is far from being a twit.
But there's not much either actor can do with this bluntly drawn twit.
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