One day an unknown youth asked Mozart to explain to him how to start to compose a symphony.
- You are young, - answered Mozart. In the beginning write a ballade, and if you like it, come to me.
- But you! At the age of ten you have composed a lot of music.
- But I did not ask anybody how to do it.
- oblong mass of metal (esp. Iron or lead) from a smelting-furnace.
- slang derog. Police officer. —v. (-gg-) colloq. Eat (food) greedily. buy a pig in a poke acquire something without previous sight or knowledge of it. Pig it colloq. Live in a disorderly or filthy fashion. Pig out (often foll. By on) esp. Us slang eat gluttonously. [old english]
abbr. Personal identification number (for use with a cashcard etc.).
- —n. - small thin pointed piece of metal with a round or flattened head used (esp. In sewing) for holding things in place, attaching one thing to another, etc.
- peg of wood or metal for various purposes.
- (in idioms) something of small value (not worth a pin).
- (in pl.) Colloq. Legs. —v. (-nn-) 1 a (often foll. By to, up, together) fasten with a pin or pins. B transfix with a pin, lance, etc.
- (usu. Foll. By on) put (blame, responsibility, etc.) On (a person etc.).
- (often foll. By against, on, etc.) Seize and hold fast. pin down 1 (often foll. By to) bind (a person etc.) To a promise, arrangement, etc.
- force (a person) to declare his or her intentions.
- restrict the actions of (an enemy etc.).
- specify (a thing) precisely. Pin one's faith (or hopes etc.) On rely implicitly on. [latin pinna point etc.]
—n. Seed of an apple, pear, orange, grape, etc. —v. (-pp-) remove the pips from (fruit etc.). pipless adj. [abbreviation of *pippin]
- n. Short high-pitched sound, usu. Electronically produced, esp. As a time signal. [imitative]
- v. (-pp-) colloq. - hit with a shot.
- (also pip at the post) defeat narrowly or at the last moment. [origin unknown]
- n. - any of the spots on a playing-card, dice, or domino.
- star (1–3 according to rank) on the shoulder of an army officer's uniform. [origin unknown]
- n. - disease of poultry etc.
- colloq. Fit of disgust or bad temper (esp. Give one the pip). [low german or dutch]
bull terrier n. Small american dog noted for ferocity.
- of the stomach n. Depression below the breastbone.
- —n. - a deep hole in the ground, usu. Large. B coalmine. C covered hole as a trap for animals.
- hollow on a surface, esp. An indentation of the skin.
- a = orchestra pit (see *orchestra 2). B usu. Hist. Seating at the back of the stalls.
- (the pits) slang worst imaginable place, situation, person, etc.
- a area at the side of a track where racing cars are serviced and refuelled. B sunken area in a workshop floor for access to a car's underside. —v. (-tt-) 1 (usu. Foll. By against) set (one's wits, strength, etc.) In competition.
- (usu. As pitted adj.) Make pits, scars, craters, etc. In.
- put into a pit. [old english from latin puteus well]
- v. (-tt-) (usu. As pitted adj.) Remove stones from (fruit). [origin uncertain]
abbr. (also plc) public limited company.
abbr. Palestine liberation organization.
abbr. Public lending right.
n. (pl. -ies) 1 thickness or layer of cloth or wood etc.
- strand of yarn or rope etc. [french pli: related to *plait]
- v. (-ies, -ied) 1 use or wield (a tool, weapon, etc.).
- work steadily at (ply one's trade).
- (foll. By with) a supply continuously (with food, drink, etc.). B approach repeatedly (with questions, etc.).
- a (often foll. By between) (of a vehicle etc.) Travel regularly to and fro. B work (a route) thus.
- (of a taxi-driver etc.) Attend regularly for custom (ply for hire). [from *apply]