Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An unapparent source of trouble or danger; a hidden hazard: "potential pitfalls stemming from their optimistic inflation assumptions” ( New York Times).
  • n. A concealed hole in the ground that serves as a trap.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a potential problem, hazard, or danger that is easily encountered but not immediately obvious.
  • n. An anti-pattern.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A pit deceitfully covered to entrap wild beasts or men; a trap of any kind.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To lead into a pitfall; insnare.
  • n. A pit into which an animal may fall unawares, the opening being so covered as to escape observation.
  • n. Hence Figuratively, any concealed danger or source of disaster.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a trap in the form of a concealed hole
  • n. an unforeseen or unexpected or surprising difficulty

Etymologies

pit +‎ fall (Wiktionary)

Examples

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