By fits
Fit Fit, n. [AS. fit strife, fight; of uncertain origin. [root] 77.] 1. A stroke or blow. [Obs. or R.] [1913 Webster]

Curse on that cross, quoth then the Sarazin, That keeps thy body from the bitter fit. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

2. A sudden and violent attack of a disorder; a stroke of disease, as of epilepsy or apoplexy, which produces convulsions or unconsciousness; a convulsion; a paroxysm; hence, a period of exacerbation of a disease; in general, an attack of disease; as, a fit of sickness. [1913 Webster]

And when the fit was on him, I did mark How he did shake. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

3. A mood of any kind which masters or possesses one for a time; a temporary, absorbing affection; a paroxysm; as, a fit of melancholy, of passion, or of laughter. [1913 Webster]

All fits of pleasure we balanced by an equal degree of pain. --Swift. [1913 Webster]

The English, however, were on this subject prone to fits of jealously. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

4. A passing humor; a caprice; a sudden and unusual effort, activity, or motion, followed by relaxation or inaction; an impulsive and irregular action. [1913 Webster]

The fits of the season. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

5. A darting point; a sudden emission. [R.] [1913 Webster]

A tongue of light, a fit of flame. --Coleridge. [1913 Webster]

{By fits}, {By fits and starts}, by intervals of action and repose; impulsively and irregularly; intermittently. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • by fits — adverb or by fits and starts : at intervals : impulsively and irregularly : fitfully, intermittently slow wandering footsteps that halted and came on by fits Pearl Buck Japanese expansion proceeded not according to any coldly calculated master… …   Useful english dictionary

  • by fits — or by fits and starts or in fits and starts phrasal in an impulsive and irregular manner < construction proceeded by fits and starts > …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • by fits — Irregularly, fitfully, by fits and starts …   New dictionary of synonyms

  • by\ fits\ and\ jerks — • by fits and starts • by fits and jerks adv. phr. With many stops and starts, a little now and a little more later; not all the time; irregularly. He had worked on the invention by fits and starts for several years. You will never get anywhere… …   Словарь американских идиом

  • by\ fits\ and\ starts — • by fits and starts • by fits and jerks adv. phr. With many stops and starts, a little now and a little more later; not all the time; irregularly. He had worked on the invention by fits and starts for several years. You will never get anywhere… …   Словарь американских идиом

  • by fits and starts — adverb intermittently he worked on his book by fits and starts * * * adverb see by fits * * * by/in/fits and starts phrase stopping and starting again many times, rather than progressing steadily Efforts …   Useful english dictionary

  • By fits and starts — Fit Fit, n. [AS. fit strife, fight; of uncertain origin. [root] 77.] 1. A stroke or blow. [Obs. or R.] [1913 Webster] Curse on that cross, quoth then the Sarazin, That keeps thy body from the bitter fit. Spenser. [1913 Webster] 2. A sudden and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • by fits and starts — irregularly, with many stops and starts By fits and starts the company was finally able to begin business. (from Idioms in Speech) in sudden outbursts of energy, not lasting for a long time Youth only recognizes age by fits and starts. (J.… …   Idioms and examples

  • by fits and starts — or[jerks] {adv. phr.} With many stops and starts, a little now and a little more later; not all the time; irregularly. * /He had worked on the invention by fits and starts for several years./ * /You will never get anywhere if you study just by… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • by fits and starts — or[jerks] {adv. phr.} With many stops and starts, a little now and a little more later; not all the time; irregularly. * /He had worked on the invention by fits and starts for several years./ * /You will never get anywhere if you study just by… …   Dictionary of American idioms

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