I came across the phrase ‘bit it’ in the quote from Washington Post’s William Branigin’s comment to support the Washington’s decision not to show the picture of the dead body of Osama bin Laden in Washington Post’s ‘Comment of the Day’ (May 4). It reads:

Good, because showing that picture would be the U.S. lowering its standards for those that like and enjoy gruesome, bloody bodies. I am sure the pic will get out somehow, but not because of Obama. If folks do not want to believe bin Laden is dead, so bit it. He's dead.

As I met the phrase, ‘bit it’ for the first time, I checked up its meaning in English dictionaries at hand and through Google, but wasn’t able to find any entry of this phrase. Only Internet Slang Com. carries definition of ‘bite it’ as “to fall and bite the ground” with an example,"Toey bit it hard this morning on his way down the stairs,” as its usage.

So, what does “Bit it” mean? Is it derivative from (or past tense of) “Bite it,” or “Bet it”?

  • I checked the story by Branigin at WaPo's web site and I can't find that quote. Perhaps it was a misprint and they simply corrected it. In any case, "so bit it" is not a saying I have ever heard used before.
    – Robusto
    Commented May 5, 2011 at 0:25
  • 12
    Based on the context, I'd say "so be it" was intended.
    – user362
    Commented May 5, 2011 at 0:30
  • I managed to find it here: washingtonpost.com/politics , but it's not from Branigin, it's from a commenter 'ncarvill1', and like Al Everett says, it's very likely a typo of 'so be it'
    – Dusty
    Commented May 5, 2011 at 0:34
  • @Yoichi: Most news sites will not edit comment threads following articles for typos, so you're apt to find many. Commented May 5, 2011 at 1:39
  • @Robusto/Dusty/Calithanpian-san. I cut-and-pasted the above quote from the text of ‘Comment of the Today’ in WP’s top news summaries sent by e-mail every day. It wasn’t from the original article. So I tried to visit the original text of the source of the quote, but couldn’t locate it. The same thing happened in the question about the expression, “Live goes on. Wills to heart” I posted April 27, that was found to have been made by a non-native comment sender. We non-native speakers tend to believe everything printed in press is infallible, but it depends on who says, who writes, how proofed. Commented May 5, 2011 at 3:01

2 Answers 2


Agreed with others that it's pretty certainly a typo. FYI, 'bit it' in common usage isn't usually 'biting the ground'; it's more commonly a simplification of 'biting the dust' or 'biting the big one', etc., which in turn mean dying.

So 'biting it' generally is hyperbole, and refers to taking a particularly hard hit.


It's a typo. It should read:

If folks do not want to believe bin Laden is dead, so be it. He's dead.

  • I was told not to use comments as answers. But I agree with you.
    – Lambie
    Commented Apr 12, 2018 at 22:53

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.