, picks verb, transitive
a. To select from a group: The best swimmer was picked.
b. To select or cull.
a. To gather in; harvest: They were picking cotton.
b. To gather the harvest from: picked the field in one day.
a. To remove the outer covering of; pluck: pick a chicken clean of feathers.
b. To tear off bit by bit: pick meat from the bones.
- To remove extraneous matter from (the teeth).
- To poke and pull at (something) with the fingers.
- To break up, separate, or detach by means of a sharp pointed instrument.
- To pierce or make (a hole) with a sharp pointed instrument.
- To take up (food) with the beak; peck: The parrot picked its seed.
- To steal the contents of: My pocket was picked.
- To open (a lock) without the use of a key.
- To provoke: pick a fight.
a. To pluck (an instrument's strings).
b. To play (an instrument) by plucking its strings.
c. To play (a tune) in this manner: picked a melody out on the guitar.
- To decide with care or forethought.
- To work with a pick.
- To find fault or make petty criticisms; carp: He's always picking about something.
- To be harvested or gathered: The ripe apples picked easily.
Phrasal Verbs: pick apart
- The act of picking, especially with a sharp pointed instrument.
- The act of selecting or choosing; choice: got first pick of the desserts.
- Something selected as the most desirable; the best or choicest part: the pick of the crop.
- The amount or quantity of a crop that is picked by hand.
- Basketball A screen.
To refute or find flaws in by close examination: The lawyer picked the testimony apart. pick at
To pluck or pull at, especially with the fingers. To eat sparingly or without appetite: The child just picked at the food. Informal
To nag: Don't pick at me. pick off
To shoot after singling out: The hunter picked the ducks off one by one. Baseball
To catch (a base runner) off base and put out with a quick throw, as from the pitcher or catcher, often to a specified base. Sports
To intercept, as a football pass. pick on
To tease or bully. pick out
To choose or select: picked out a nice watch.
To discern from the surroundings; distinguish: picked out their cousins from the crowd. pick over
To sort out or examine item by item: picked over the grapes before buying them. pick up
a. To take up (something) by hand: pick up a book.
b. To collect or gather: picked up some pebbles.
c. To tidy up: picked up the bedroom.
To take on (passengers or freight, for example): The bus picks up commuters at five stops. Informal
a. To acquire casually or by accident: picked up a new coat on sale.
b. To acquire (knowledge) by learning or experience: picked up French quickly.
c. To claim: picked up her car at the repair shop.
d. To buy: picked up some milk at the store.
e. To accept (a bill or charge) in order to pay it: Let me pick up the tab.
f. To come down with (a disease): picked up a virus at school.
g. To gain: picked up five yards on that play. Informal
To take into custody: The agents picked up six smugglers. Slang
To make casual acquaintance with, usually in anticipation of sexual relations.
a. To come upon and follow: The dog picked up the scent.
b. To come upon and observe: picked up two submarines on sonar.
To continue after a break: Let's pick up the discussion after lunch. Informal
To improve in condition or activity: Sales picked up last fall. Slang
To prepare a sudden departure: She just picked up and left.
Origin: Middle English piken, to prick
Origin: , from Old English *pīcian, to prick
Origin: , and from Old French piquer, to pierce (from Vulgar Latin *piccāre; see pique )