Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


I should be b-a-d, and I should sit up nights to invent new ways of evil.

But I kept looking and after awhile I was able to sit up and ask what hit me.

For as he tried to sit up, he fell back sick and dizzy on the bed.

This is news to me, and I sit up, sharing Watty's astonishment.

So long as I think my dog can bark, I will not sit up to bark for him.

You cannot know the night by sitting up; she will sit up with you.

Robert, you can go to bed now, I will sit up for Mr. Wentworth.

She slid to the floor beside him, as if she were too tired to sit up any longer.

We'll start a weekly paper here, you and I, and we'll make them sit up all round.

No,” as he leant forward and kissed her again, “now sit up and light your pipe.


Old English sittan "to occupy a seat, be seated, sit down, seat oneself; remain, continue; settle, encamp, occupy; lie in wait; besiege" (class V strong verb; past tense sæt, past participle seten), from Proto-Germanic *setjan (cf. Old Saxon sittian, Old Norse sitja, Danish sidde, Old Frisian sitta, Middle Dutch sitten, Dutch zitten, Old High German sizzan, German sitzen, Gothic sitan), from PIE root *sed- (1) "to sit" (see sedentary).

With past tense sat, formerly also set, now restricted to dialect, and sate, now archaic; and past participle sat, formerly sitten. In reference to a legislative assembly, from 1510s. Meaning "to baby-sit" is recorded from 1966.

To sit back "be inactive" is from 1943. To sit on one's hands was originally "to withhold applause" (1926); later, "to do nothing" (1959). To sit around "be idle, do nothing" is 1915, American English. To sit out "not take part" is from 1650s. Sitting pretty is from 1916.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.