- Pith is soft and spongy material in plant stems and the core of animal bones, or the white tissue lining the rind of an orange, lemon or other citrus fruit.
An example of pith is the spongy material found inside plant stems.
- the soft, spongy tissue in the center of certain plant stems
- the soft core of various other things, as of a bone or feather
- the spongy, fibrous tissue lining the rind and surrounding the sections of an orange, grapefruit, etc.
- the essential part; substance; gist
- importance: now usually in
- Archaic strength; vigor; force
Origin of pithMiddle English pithe ; from Old English pitha, akin to Middle Dutch pitte, pit of a fruit, kernel, pith of a tree
- to remove the pith from (a plant stem)
- to pierce or sever the spinal cord of (an animal) in order to kill it or make it insensible for experimental purposes
- The soft, spongy tissue in the center of the stems of most vascular plants, consisting mainly of parenchyma.
- a. The soft inner substance of a feather or hair.b. The spinal cord.
- The essential or central part; the heart or essence: The pith of your argument is controversial.
- Strength; vigor; mettle.
- Significance; importance: matters of great pith.
transitive verbpithed, pith·ing, piths
- To remove the pith from (a plant stem).
- To sever or destroy the spinal cord of, usually by inserting a needle into the vertebral canal.
- To kill (cattle) by cutting the spinal cord.
Origin of pithMiddle English, from Old English pitha.
- pith helmet
(third-person singular simple present piths, present participle pithing, simple past and past participle pithed)
- To extract the pith from (a plant stem or tree).
- To kill (especially cattle or laboratory animals) by cutting or piercing the spinal cord.