pit

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pit1 / pit/ • n. 1. a large hole in the ground. ∎  a large deep hole from which stones or minerals are dug. ∎  a coal mine. ∎  a sunken enclosure in which certain animals are kept in captivity. ∎ short for orchestra pit (see orchestra). ∎  a sunken area in a workshop floor allowing access to a car's underside. ∎ fig. a low or wretched psychological state: spiraling downward into the pit of despair. ∎  (the pit) poetic/lit. hell. 2. an area reserved or enclosed for a specific activity, in particular: ∎  (usu. pits) an area at the side of a track where race cars are serviced and refueled. ∎  a part of the floor of an exchange in which a particular stock or commodity is traded, typically by open outcry. ∎  chiefly hist. an enclosure in which animals are made to fight. 3. a hollow or indentation in a surface. ∎  a small indentation left on the skin after smallpox, acne, or other diseases; a pockmark. • v. (pit·ted , pit·ting ) [tr.] 1. (pit someone/something against) set someone or something in conflict or competition with: a chance to pit herself against him. ∎  hist. set an animal to fight against (another animal) for sport. 2. make a hollow or indentation in the surface of: rain poured down, pitting the bare earth. ∎  [intr.] sink in or contract so as to form a pit or hollow. 3. [intr.] drive a race car into the pits for fuel or maintenance. PHRASES: be the pits inf. be extremely bad or the worst of its kind. the pit of one's (or the) stomach an ill-defined region of the lower abdomen regarded as the seat of strong feelings, esp. anxiety. pit2 • n. the stone of a fruit. • v. (pit·ted , pit·ting ) [tr.] remove the pit from (fruit).

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PIT

PIT, the popular name for trading floors of commodity exchanges, is most often applied to that of the Board of Trade of the City of Chicago, the largest exchange in the United States. The Pit records world opinion on the price of key commodities and promotes a liquid market by providing opportunities to make contracts for future delivery ("futures") and to protect buyers against price changes ("hedges").

Founded on 3 April 1848, the Board of Trade was organized in 1850 under a general statute and incorporated by a special legislative act on 18 February 1859. The Board of Trade is governed by a board of directors; an appointed professional serves as president.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Cowing, Cedric B. Populists, Plungers, and Progressives: A Social History of Stock and Commodity Speculation: 1890–1936. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1965.

Benjamin F.Shambaugh/c. w.

See alsoCommodity Exchanges ; Exchanges .

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pitacquit, admit, backlit, bedsit, befit, bit, Brit, Britt, chit, commit, demit, dit, emit, fit, flit, frit, git, grit, hit, intermit, it, kit, knit, legit, lickety-split, lit, manumit, mishit, mitt, nit, omit, outsit, outwit, permit, pit, Pitt, pretermit, quit, remit, retrofit, shit, sit, skit, slit, snit, spit, split, sprit, squit, submit, tit, transmit, twit, whit, wit, writ, zit •albeit, howbeit •poet •bluet, cruet, intuit, suet, Yuit •Inuit • floruit • Jesuit •Babbitt, cohabit, habit, rabbet, rabbit •ambit, gambit •jackrabbit • barbet • Nesbit • rarebit •adhibit, exhibit, gibbet, inhibit, prohibit •titbit (US tidbit) • flibbertigibbet •Cobbett, gobbet, hobbit, obit, probit •orbit • Tobit •cubit, two-bit •hatchet, latchet, ratchet •Pritchett •crotchet, rochet

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pit A region in a cell wall where the primary wall is not overlaid by secondary thickening, through which substances can be exchanged between adjacent cells. The pit consists of a cavity, which is the area of thinning in the secondary wall, and a pit membrane, which is the primary cell wall covering the cavity. Pits usually occur in pairs. See BORDERED PIT, PRIMARY PIT, and SECONDARY PIT; See also PLASMODESMATA.

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pit
1. A depression or cavity in the secondary wall of a plant cell that facilitates the movement of substances between adjacent cells. The equivalent structures in primary cell walls are called primary pit fields, areas where plasmodesmata are concentrated and pit development usually occurs. A pit comprises a pit membrane, consisting of the middle lamella plus the primary wall; and a pit cavity, the depression in the secondary wall. Pits usually occur in pairs (called pit pairs) on either side of the middle lamella between two adjacent cells.

2. (coated pit) See endosome.

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pit hole in the ground OE.; hell; hollow in a surface XIII. OE. pytt = OFris. pett, OS. putti (MDu. putte, Du. put), OHG. pfuzzi (G. pfütze pool, puddle):- WGmc. *putti, puttja — L. puteus well, pit, shaft.
Hence pit vb. put in a pit; make pits in XV; set (opponents) together in a (cock)pit; match, oppose XVIII. pitfall XIV.

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pit dig a pit for try to trap; a common biblical metaphor, as in Jeremiah 18:20.
the pit of one's stomach the lower abdomen regarded as the seat of strong feelings, especially anxiety.

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pit (pit) n. (in anatomy) a hollow or depression.