American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth 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.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A pit into which an animal may fall unawares, the opening being so covered as to escape observation. Pitfalls are much used for the capture of large animals in Africa and India and elsewhere, and are sometimes fitted with stout sharp-pointed upright stakes intended to transfix the animal which falls upon them.
- n. Hence Figuratively, any concealed danger or source of disaster.
- To lead into a pitfall; insnare.
- n. a potential problem, hazard, or danger that is easily encountered but not immediately obvious.
- n. computing An anti-pattern.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A pit deceitfully covered to entrap wild beasts or men; a trap of any kind.
- pit + fall (Wiktionary)
“That's probably the main pitfall of the car insurance analogy.”
“And the piece about avoiding the not doing something pitfall is the kind of thing that I can stand to hear many times, so thanks for that.”
“The only possible pitfall is complacency -- but the prospect of competing for a national title for the first time should cure that.”
“One does have to be obsessive with the little pieces and the instructions - my biggest pitfall is that I have a pretty good sense of how things fit together and I get cocky.”
“The pitfall is that if some story aspect is already working, stretching can create distortion: characters that pass edgy and go straight to unnatural or unsympathetic, conflicts that no longer fit the tone or intent of the story, etc …”
“Of course, a pitfall is the caveat that the instructor needs to be a competent one.”
“Another pitfall is the urge to state the obvious: No one, Gladwell concludes in a chapter comparing a high-IQ failure named Chris Langan with the brilliantly successful J. Robert Oppenheimer, not rock stars, not professional athletes, not software billionaires and not even geniuses-ever makes it alone.”
“Bush's ads mirror his general-market spots, a potential "pitfall," says Machado.”
“The same kind of pitfall will always lie ahead of you, Chris; that, too, is an aspect of the job.”
“Animism is, as already explained, a pitfall which is always yawning before us and into which we are sure to plunge unless we are ever watchful.”
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Words with definitions containing both "hence" and "figuratively."
words that end in fall
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