litter


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litter something about

 and litter something around
to cast around something, such as trash, clothing, personal possessions, etc. Don't litter all that stuff about. I wish you wouldn't litter your trash around.
See also: litter

litter something up

to mess something up with litter, trash, possessions, etc. Who littered this room up? Who littered up this room?
See also: litter, up

runt of the litter

 
1. Lit. the smallest animal born in a litter; the animal in a litter least likely to survive. No one wanted to buy the runt of the litter, so we kept it.
2. and the runt of the family Fig. the smallest child in the family. I was the runt of the litter and the butt of all the jokes.
See also: litter, of, runt

pick of the litter

The best of a group, as in He was first in the ticket line so he had the pick of the litter. This term, alluding to the most desirable one from a litter of puppies or kittens, supplanted such earlier variants as pick of the market, pick of the parish, and pick of the basket. [Early 1900s]
See also: litter, of, pick
References in classic literature ?
He took it into his head that the litter was a bier on which was borne some sorely wounded or slain knight, to avenge whom was a task reserved for him alone; and without any further reasoning he laid his lance in rest, fixed himself firmly in his saddle, and with gallant spirit and bearing took up his position in the middle of the road where the encamisados must of necessity pass; and as soon as he saw them near at hand he raised his voice and said:
They set the litter down, turned and vanished into the darkness toward the village.
The litter, borne by two servants, now entered the house.
cried Kim, relieved, as the lama tottered to the litter.
Accordingly Gagool's litter was brought up, and that lady herself assisted out of it.
On the table, crowded with paints, palette-knives, and litter of all kinds, was the end of a candle.
In the centre of this crowd, the grand officers of the Brotherhood of Fools bore on their shoulders a litter more loaded down with candles than the reliquary of Sainte-Geneviève in time of pest; and on this litter shone resplendent, with crosier, cope, and mitre, the new Pope of the Fools, the bellringer of Notre-Dame, Quasimodo the hunchback.
Beside him rode a stout Saxon franklin, Ellen's father, Edward of Deirwold; behind those two came a litter borne by two horses, and therein was a maiden whom Robin knew must be Ellen.
No wonder your room is not fit for a pigsty--no wonder your pupils are worse than a litter of pigs
In the centre of this pacific and fragrant cortege the black tulip was seen, carried on a litter, which was covered with white velvet and fringed with gold.
The boy merely peered into the house as he passed around it to the rear, and he saw his father and mother, at opposite corners, sleeping without covering, and, in the middle of the floor, his four naked brothers and sisters curled together in a tangle like a litter of puppies.
And certainly it was he that caused the mother the most trouble in keeping her litter from the mouth of the cave.
A BITCH, ready to whelp, earnestly begged a shepherd for a place where she might litter.
If the telegram mean anything," he wrote, "it means that the fragments of the torn letter have been cast into the housemaid's bucket (along with the dust, the ashes, and the rest of the litter in the room), and have been emptied on the dust-heap at Gleninch.
Slowly they gave back down the hill, the archers still hanging upon their skirts, with a long litter of writhing and twisted figures to mark the course which they had taken.