Definitions

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

  • n. A bowl-shaped, usually metal vessel, often with a funnel-shaped cover, into which tobacco chewers periodically spit.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a receptacle for spit.
  • n. the absorbent pad an ink cartridge rests on in an inkjet printer.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A spitbox; a cuspidor.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A vessel for receiving what is spit from the mouth; especially, a round vessel of metal, earthenware, or porcelain, made in the form of a funnel at the top, and having a bowl-shaped compartment beneath, which may be partly filled with water; a cuspidor.

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

  • n. a receptacle for spit (usually in a public place)

Etymologies

spit1 + -oon (as in balloon).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • Oh -- the way you get your foot out of a spittoon is just to unlace your shoe and take your foot out of it.

    The Day I Spoke for Mr. Lincoln

  • From its sloping internal form it might have been called the spittoon of the Jotuns.

    The Mayor of Casterbridge

  • On the table was placed all his text books and such other teacher's implements, or fixings, and then to descend as it were from the "sublime to the ridiculous," he installed, within easy reach, a large earthen "spittoon," or more modernly speaking, "cuspidor."

    Life gleanings, by compiled

  • Did he not know that the very "spittoon" which his judgeship used cost the city the sum of one thousand dollars?

    The Gilded Age A tale of today

  • “I guess I’d rather be shot for adultery than for missing my aim at a goddamn spittoon, which is what Kate’s so mad about.”

    Telegraph Days

  • There are some very amusing moments, not least when the central character, Miles Raymond Paul Giamatti, threatens to leave if somebody orders Merlot and a rather revolting episode involving a spittoon.

    Cinematic Reflections

  • I met his children, and his gouty father-in-law seated by a spittoon.

    Before Liberty Was a Lady

  • I'd like to thank Wines of Chile for sending me the 8 wines (and the spittoon and corkscrew) and for hosting the tasting.

    Wines of Chile Online Tasting: Because Man Can't Live on Only New York Wines

  • Somewhere in the Great Beyond, Talmadge may have reached for his spittoon again this week after US Sen. Johnny Isakson invoked the “nut” word.

    Health Insurance Reform reality check (Blog for Democracy)

  • Nunn recalled that when he mentioned casually that he answered most of his mail, but ignored “nuts” like those who believed in flying saucers, Talmadge spit vigorously into the spittoon by his desk and gave him a solemn warning:

    Health Insurance Reform reality check (Blog for Democracy)

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