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To look a bit of a tit...

Posted by Victoria S Dennis on August 16, 2005

In Reply to: To look a bit of a tit... posted by James Briggs on August 16, 2005

: : "To look a bit of a tit..." Hi I'm from Poland and have no idea what that phrase means. If anyone can help please email...

: To look foolish, but I don't know why it's come to mean this.

Well, t i t has a number of meanings. Several of them (which according to the Oxford english Dictionary all derive from the Icelandic "titlingr" meaning "sparrow") are a bird of the genus Paridae (e.g. the blue-tit); a small horse: girl or young woman - in a derogatory sense. An unrelated meaning, "breast, nipple" is cognate with "teat", French "teton" and Spanish "teta". But in the phrase "a bit of a tit" it may be a corruption of "twit", meaning "fool", which is a euphemism for "twat" (meaning, to put it genteelly, "the female sexual organ"). "You twat!" as an insult is about on a par with "You pillock/dickhead/w**ker/c**t"). [I assume that on this board we're too well-bred to spell these things out - am I wrong?]