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a. The natural ability to perceive and understand; intelligence.
b. often wits Practical intelligence; shrewdness or resourcefulness: living by one's wits.
c. wits Sound mental faculties; sanity: scared out of my wits.
d. Archaic A person of exceptional intelligence.
a. The ability to express oneself intelligently in a playful or humorous manner, often in overturning audience expectations: a writer with a scintillating wit.
b. A person noted for this ability, especially in conversation: "My mother, the family wit and teaser, knew better than to joke about the disaster" (Donald Hall).
c. Intelligent playfulness or humor in expression, as in speech, writing, or art: novels known for their wit and inventiveness.
at (one's) wits' end
At the limit of one's mental resources; utterly at a loss.
have (or keep) (one's) wits about (one)
To remain alert or calm, especially in a crisis.
[Middle English, from Old English; see weid- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
v. wist (wĭst), wit·ting (wĭt′ĭng), first and third person singular present tense wot (wŏt) Archaic
To be or become aware of; learn.
That is to say; namely.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (sometimes singular) the ability to reason and act, esp quickly (esp in the phrase have one's wits about one)
2. (sometimes singular) right mind, sanity (esp in the phrase out of one's wits)
3. at one's wits' end at a loss to know how to proceed
4. five wits obsolete the five senses or mental faculties
5. live by one's wits to gain a livelihood by craftiness and cunning rather than by hard work
(Education) informal South African University of the Witwatersrand
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
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|Noun||1.||wits - the basic human power of intelligent thought and perception; "he used his wits to get ahead"; "I was scared out of my wits"; "he still had all his marbles and was in full possession of a lively mind"|
intelligence - the ability to comprehend; to understand and profit from experience
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.