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pithy

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj pithy concise and full of meaning "welcomed her pithy comments","the peculiarly sardonic and sententious style in which Don Luis composed his epigrams"- Hervey Allen"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Pithy Consisting wholly, or in part, of pith; abounding in pith; as, a pithy stem; a pithy fruit.
    • Pithy Having nervous energy; forceful; cogent. "This pithy speech prevailed, and all agreed.""In all these Goodman Fact was very short, but pithy ."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • pithy Of the nature of or full of pith; containing or abounding with pith: as, a pithy stem; a pithy substance.
    • pithy Full of pith or force; forcible; containing much in a concentrated or dense form; of style, sententious: as, a pithy saying or expression.
    • pithy Given to the use of pithy or forcible expressions.
    • pithy Synonyms and Terse, laconic, concise, pointed, sententious.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Pithy full of pith: forcible: strong: energetic
    • ***

Quotations

  • Denis Diderot
    Denis%20Diderot
    “Pithy sentences are like sharp nails which force truth upon our memory.”

Etymology

Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. pitha; Dut. pit, marrow.

Usage

In literature:

Pithy sayings are numerous.
"The Ship of Fools, Volume 1" by Sebastian Brandt
I crystallized my ideas into pithy sentences which a child could have understood.
"Love Among the Chickens" by P. G. Wodehouse
He abounds in all manner of pithy sayings, many of them wise, a few of them profound, and not one which is unworthy a second reading.
"The Bibliotaph" by Leon H. Vincent
Lincoln listened for hours one night, speaking only at rare intervals to tell a pithy story, until the clock struck one.
"Pushing to the Front" by Orison Swett Marden
The interior of the tree is full of useless pithy matter.
"Mark Seaworth" by William H.G. Kingston
An immense amount of chattering by the others followed these pithy remarks of the principals.
"Black Ivory" by R.M. Ballantyne
The following four may be called "Maxims," and the first is singularly pithy and powerfully expressed.
"Chaldea" by Zénaïde A. Ragozin
Hathelsborough suddenly became flooded with handbills and posters, each bearing a few pithy words in enormous type.
"In the Mayor's Parlour" by J. S. (Joseph Smith) Fletcher
Fire would seem to spoil the curt, pithy expression of vitality which belongs to its uncooked juices.
"The Stock-Feeder's Manual" by Charles Alexander Cameron
So well did he do his work that after nearly two hundred years we are still quoting his pithy sayings.
"Children's Literature" by Charles Madison Curry
We have no such pithy hints of what was passing in his mind as we shall find Abbot Sampson dropping in the course of our story.
"Stray Studies from England and Italy" by John Richard Greene
Be pithy, bright, and witty.
"The Complete Bachelor" by Walter Germain
A small drum, made from the stem of a hollowed tree, generally of the palm-tribe, as the centre is pithy and the skin flinty.
"The Sailor's Word-Book" by William Henry Smyth
Conversation was more pithy than voluble.
"A Tar-Heel Baron" by Mabell Shippie Clarke Pelton
It became abrupt, brief, pithy.
"Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 3 of 8" by Various
Hence our word laconic, meaning concise, pithy.
"Proverb Lore" by F. Edward Hulme
The stories were pithy and sweet and always funny.
"Makers" by Cory Doctorow
His plays, destitute for the most part of all higher qualities, abound in sprightly wit and pithy sayings.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 8" by Various
Often his apt and pithy speeches would promote good-nature and disperse the crowd.
"Harper's New Monthly Magazine" by Various
And so we were brought up on short but pithy maxims, flung to us, as it were, with the brevity of a woman who could not spare time to chatter.
"Autobiographical Reminiscences with Family Letters and Notes on Music" by Charles Gounod
***

In poetry:

The pithy elder copses sigh;
Their broad blue combs with berries weighed,
Like heavy pendulums are swayed
With ev'ry gust that hurries by.
"A November Sketch" by Madison Julius Cawein
Shall the tongue that was spoken by Wallace the wicht,
In the sangs o' thy poets sae lo'esum and bricht,
Sae pithy an' pawkie, sae tender an' true,
O' sense and slee humour an' feelin' sae fu';
"A Plea For The Deric" by Janet Hamilton
A blue sky out of the Oresteia
Arches above us. O father, all by yourself
You are pithy and historical as the Roman Forum.
I open my lunch on a hill of black cypress.
Your fluted bones and acanthine hair are littered
"The Colossus" by Sylvia Plath

In news:

Guest review by Mike K. The pithy one-sentence review.
Using Rap to Teach Pithy Lessons in Business.
When I first sat down to write this blurb, I fully intended it to be a pithy diatribe against Jim DeMint.
Pithy verses deal with doomsday.
President Obama, most famous for his soaring speeches, apparently has a knack for the pithy tweet, too.
Judging from the current astrological omens, Scorpio, I'm thinking it would be a good time for you to do some almost equally pithy things.
Of the Buena Vista Cafe, Speed is uncharacteristically pithy: "It's a very cool place," he says.
We thought we were being clever and pithy, but it's bloody hard.
Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates says some of the issues debated in Monday night's presidential debate can't be wrapped up in a few pithy words.
Televised debate at the University of Denver is sure to offer a blend of choreography and spontaneity: both men have spent hours rehearsing smart lines and pithy comebacks with proxy opponents.
Movie Review Man on a Ledge : Pithy picture talks itself down.
AT the Democratic National Convention, Michelle Obama shared a pithy car story calculated to remind Americans of her husband's humble origins.
With the internet coming out of nowhere and Twitter being hauntingly familiar and all of these devices that are using snarky, pithy text, they...
Faulkner, one of America's greatest writers, generally not known for pithy quotations .
George Will was particularly pithy and funny when asked if the president has gon.
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In science:

John Wheeler also made another pithy summary of his insights: It from bit .
Emergence from Symmetry: A New Type of Cellular Automata
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