Posted by ESC on May 20, 2004
In Reply to: Pitch black, pitch perfect posted by j k on May 20, 2004
: I'd like to know the difference in the usage of *pitch* in word combinations like pitch black or pitch perfect.
Those phrases refer to different types of "pitch."
"Pitch black" or "black as pitch" refers to "a black or dark viscous substance obtained as a residue in the distillation of organic materials and especially tars." (Merriam-Webster online)
"Pitch perfect" refers to a musical term (also from Merriam-Webster online):
Main Entry: concert pitch
Function: noun 1 : INTERNATIONAL PITCH 2 : a high state of fitness, tension, or readiness
Main Entry: international pitch
: a tuning standard of 440 vibrations per second for A above middle C