twits

twit

1 [twit]
verb (used with object), twitted, twitting.
1.
to taunt, tease, ridicule, etc., with reference to anything embarrassing; gibe at. jeer at, mock, insult, deride.
2.
to reproach or upbraid. chide, scold, rebuke, criticize, revile, castigate.
noun
3.
an act of twitting.
4.
a derisive reproach; taunt; gibe.

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

Dictionary.com Unabridged

twit

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

Origin:
1810–20; origin uncertain

twit

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

Origin:
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

twit

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

Origin:
probably shortened from twitter

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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
 
n
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)
 
n
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
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

twit
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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