Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A female canine animal, especially a dog.
  • noun Offensive A woman considered to be mean, overbearing, or contemptible.
  • noun A prostitute considered in relation to a pimp.
  • noun A person in a subservient sexual role, especially an incarcerated male who provides sex to another male under threat of violence or in exchange for protection.
  • noun A person who is submissive to another, usually by performing menial or unpleasant tasks.
  • noun A man considered to be weak or contemptible.
  • noun Slang A complaint.
  • noun Slang Something very unpleasant or difficult.
  • intransitive verb To complain; grumble.
  • intransitive verb To botch; bungle. Often used with up.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun plural A set of three chains for slinging pipes.
  • noun The female of the dog; also, by extension, the female of other canine animals, as of the wolf and fox.
  • noun A coarse name of reproach for a woman.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The female of the canine kind, as of the dog, wolf, and fox.
  • noun An opprobrious name for a woman, especially a lewd woman.
  • noun an unpleasant, malicious, or offensive person.
  • noun slang something difficult or unpleasant.
  • noun slang a complaint.
  • intransitive verb slang to complain in a whining or grumbling manner; to gripe.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A female dog or other canine. In particular one who has recently had puppies.
  • noun colloquial A complaint.
  • noun colloquial, usually only used in the singular A difficult or confounding problem.
  • noun colloquial A queen (playing card), particularly the queen of spades in the card game of hearts.
  • noun figuratively Something unforgiving and unpleasant.
  • verb intransitive To behave or act as a bitch.
  • verb transitive (Should we delete(+) this sense?) To make derogatory comments.
  • verb transitive To criticize spitefully, often for the sake of complaining rather than in order to have the problem corrected.

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

  • verb say mean things
  • noun female of any member of the dog family
  • noun an unpleasant difficulty
  • noun informal terms for objecting
  • verb complain
  • noun a person (usually but not necessarily a woman) who is thoroughly disliked

Etymologies

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

[Middle English bicche, from Old English bicce.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English biche, bicche, from Old English biċċe, from Proto-Germanic *bikjōn (compare Norwegian bikkja ("dog"), Old Danish bikke), from *bikjanan (“to thrust, attack”) (compare Old Norse bikkja ("plunge into water"), Dutch bikken ("to hack")). More at bicker.

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Examples

Comments

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  • This is the word I love to hate. It has gone from meaning a female dog to a vulgar reference to a angry woman to a mainstream reference for an upwardly-moble woman. Lately I heard it used as a non-gender reference for someone who does general tasks ("He is the office bitch.") Altho I personally wouldn't use it, "Bitch" is a truly amazing example of the organic ability of language to change in context over time.

    December 19, 2007

  • I like WeirdNet's definition of it, too.

    December 19, 2007

  • The same as in "Life's a bitch". I also like riding the usage, "riding bitch", describing being the one stuck in the middle backseat of a car.

    December 19, 2007

  • Well said, samoritan!

    December 19, 2007

  • seanahan, I once saw a very small car park and 7 college guys get out. One who had emerged from the back seat was rubbing his neck and mumbled, "dude, shotgun" the way you'd utter dying words. Hilarious. I guess he was the "riding bitch" of which you speak.

    December 19, 2007

  • Isn't "riding bitch" a verb? Like, "I had to ride bitch in Jack's Miata"?

    December 19, 2007

  • It is the "bitch seat", "riding bitch" is short for "riding in the bitch seat".

    December 20, 2007

  • "It was June 10th, six-thirty in the evening, plenty of light left in the sky. Summer, that beautiful green bitch, had ridden into Maine again."

    - 'The Dark Half', Stephen King.

    December 31, 2007

  • I've seen it used with WeirdNet's definition.

    As in, "Omg, this Chemistry assignment is a bitch!"

    I have also been guilty of using bitchin' to describe things that are good as well as things that are bad.

    April 3, 2008

  • Speaking of chemistry, Boron, Iodine, Technetium, Hydrogen: BITcH

    June 27, 2008

  • In Tokyo.

    September 30, 2009