pith

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • v pith remove the pith from (a plant)
    • n pith the choicest or most essential or most vital part of some idea or experience "the gist of the prosecutor's argument","the heart and soul of the Republican Party","the nub of the story"
    • n pith soft spongelike central cylinder of the stems of most flowering plants
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Pith Hence: The which contains the strength of life; the vital or essential part; concentrated force; vigor; strength; importance; as, the speech lacked pith . "Enterprises of great pith and moment."
    • Pith (Bot) The soft spongy substance in the center of the stems of many plants and trees, especially those of the dicotyledonous or exogenous classes. It consists of cellular tissue.
    • Pith The spinal cord; the marrow.
    • Pith The spongy interior substance of a feather.
    • v. t Pith (Physiol) To destroy the central nervous system of (an animal, as a frog), as by passing a stout wire or needle up and down the vertebral canal.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n pith In botany, the medulla, or central cylinder, composed of typical parenchymatous tissue, which occupies the center of the stems of dicotyledonous plants. By Gris the cells of pith have been divided into
    • n pith In. anatomy: The spinal cord or marrow; the medulla spinalis.
    • n pith The central or medullary core of a hair.
    • n pith Strength; vigor; force.
    • n pith Energy; concentrated force; closeness and vigor of thought and style.
    • n pith Condensed substance or matter; quintessence.
    • n pith Weight; moment; importance.
    • pith To introduce an instrument into the cranial or spinal cavity of (an animal, as a frog), and destroy the cerebrospinal axis or a part of it.
    • n pith The soft interior portion of the shaft of a feather.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Pith pith the marrow or soft substance in the centre of the stems of dicotyledonous plants: force or energy: importance: condensed substance: quintessence
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
AS. pia,; akin to D. pit, pith, kernel, LG. peddik,. Cf. Pit a kernel
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. pitha; Dut. pit, marrow.

Usage

In literature:

A few minutes sufficed to pound out the pith and leave the harsh fiber exposed.
"The Boy Chums in the Forest" by Wilmer M. Ely
When I saw him I called out, for his pith hat was covered with blood.
"Sketches of Our Life at Sarawak" by Harriette McDougall
He was at the age when men are ripest for enterprises of pith and moment.
"Stephen Arnold Douglas" by William Garrott Brown
The pith, however, is clear enough.
"The English Utilitarians, Volume I." by Leslie Stephen
The pith is that he be killed.
"The Lady of Loyalty House" by Justin Huntly McCarthy
Pith non-continuous (center); continuous (right).
"The Pecan and its Culture" by H. Harold Hume
The pith of the whole sentence can be stated in a few words, if the sentence has unity.
"English: Composition and Literature" by W. F. (William Franklin) Webster
That's the pith of the situation.
"Hurricane Island" by H. B. Marriott Watson
The tree had grown evenly in all quarters, and the pith of the tree was in the centre.
"Wild Life on the Rockies" by Enos A. Mills
A Japanese mother has bought a few boxes of the pith toys from Ume.
"Harper's Young People, May 25, 1880" by Various
Finally, there are the remains of one or two pith helmets and solar topees.
"Brighter Britain! (Volume 1 of 2)" by William Delisle Hay
Pith her, George, and look sharp.
"With The Night Mail" by Rudyard Kipling
It is the pith and marrow of every substance, every relation, and every process.
"Nature" by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Such earnest natures are the fiery pith, The compact nucleus, round which systems grow.
"Christopher Columbus and His Monument Columbia" by Various
There was a deal more of it, but that was the pith.
"Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine -- Volume 57, No. 351, January 1845" by Various
This will usually be the pith of the stock, but it will depend on the varieties being grafted.
"Manual of American Grape-Growing" by U. P. Hedrick
Her artful wit gives pith and moment to the most trivial enterprises, and turns domestic projects into adventures of high romance.
"Pot-Boilers" by Clive Bell
And besides, my dear Sir, the pith of the whole device is to take that money from you.
"The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. XXII (of 25)" by Robert Louis Stevenson
He looked as if his backbone had lost its pith; he sagged.
"The Deaves Affair" by Hulbert Footner
The pith in the large part of the stalk, was then extracted by another machine.
"Solaris Farm" by Milan C. Edson
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In poetry:

O soft flower of the grassland;
O sweet greenness of the apple;
O garnered load without pith;
none stoop to evil from your weight.
"O Jerusalem" by Hildegard von Bingen
Now from this nation's hall of state
Comes Roger Tanney's vile decree,
Composed of all the pith and hate
Of that dark land of slavery.
"The Black Man's Wrongs" by James Madison Bell
And there's a nice youngster of excellent pith,—
Fate tried to conceal him by naming him Smith;
But he shouted a song for the brave and the free,
Just read on his medal, "My country," "of thee!"
"The Boys" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
Names are vanished, save the few
In the old brown Bible scrawled;
These were men of pith and thew,
Whom the city never called;
Scarce could read or hold a quill,
Built the barn, the forge, the mill.
"Forefathers" by Edmund Blunden
I will not fight: though proud of pith
I hold no one worth striving with;
And should resentment burn my breast
I deem that silence serves me best:
So having not a word to say,
Contemptuous I turn away.
"I Will Not Fight" by Robert W Service
Opinions which I had been taught to hold
As full of pith and gravity, he took
As 'twere, 'twixt thumb and finger of his wit--
Rubbed off their gloss, until they seemed to me,
All, as he said, varnished hypocrisies.
"A Friend Of Mine" by James Barron Hope

In news:

A bill filed by Councilman Duane Dominy that would green-light the relocation of an asphalt plant on Antioch's Franklin Limestone Road and has sparked ire from residents will be indefinitely deferred , according to an email obtained by Pith.
Rarely does testimony at official City Hall gatherings meet high literary standards of eloquence and pith.
Pith's Truth-O-Meter Goes Haywire .
The author of "Berried Treasure" discusses fruit mysteries and pith helmet style.
Pith Follows British Leader on Twitter.
To the Pith of London's Heart.
This multilayered sensing and networking ability is, in the mind of some artificial-life computer researchers, the pith of intelligence.
Phil Valentine went off on Zach Wamp again on his radio show yesterday, this time reading aloud from a Pith in the Wind post that spoofed the congressman's increasingly crazy criticisms of Bill Haslam.
After months of deliberation and hearsay, Pith has it on authority that the tony Belle Meade Country Club has admitted its first resident African-American member.
Using a sharp knife, peel the grapefruits , removing all of the bitter white pith.
As longtime readers of Betsy Phillips know, whether they follow her here on Pith or at her Tiny Cat Pants blog, the ceiling hasn't been made that could hold Aunt B back.
Using a vegetable peeler, remove the peel from the orange in strips, being careful not to remove the white pith.
How to Create Lemon Peels, Pith and Rind.
1 lemon (about 4 ounces)—peeled, pith removed and halved.
Using a sharp knife, remove and discard the white pith.
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