Definition of sitting in US English:



  • 1A continuous period of being seated, especially when engaged in a particular activity.

    ‘the whole roast was eaten at one sitting’
    • ‘I swore then and there to drink the entire bottle in a single sitting.’
    • ‘He eats around 10 pounds at a sitting at least three times a week before a big match, increasing the volume each time.’
    • ‘Laser facials require eight sittings at intervals of two weeks.’
    • ‘At breakfast the general was ‘merry and affable’ but the sitting was soon interrupted by the arrival of urgent dispatches.’
    • ‘The more calories you eat in a sitting, the more likely you are to store them as body fat.’
    • ‘And sure, it is a lot to ask the average museum visitor to sit through eight films in one sitting.’
    • ‘Egged on by Coulson's legendary enthusiasm, Macdonald confesses to having once eaten six puddings in a single sitting.’
    1. 1.1 A period of time spent as a model for an artist or photographer.
      • ‘The sitting is over quickly - little more than five minutes.’
      • ‘Blanch was his stand-in model between sittings with his portrait subjects, including the queen.’
      • ‘How many sittings did Ian have for his portrait?’
      • ‘During the first few sittings, the artist must concentrate on the face and any other physical qualities, such as hands, that need special attention.’
      • ‘After the initial sittings for the portrait, the Marquise suddenly took ill and died, and Drouais was obliged to complete the portrait from memory.’
      • ‘I went for five sittings in total and on the first one she just tried to make me feel at home, making jokes all the time.’
      • ‘The portrait was completed in the artist's studio in Suffolk after five sittings in January.’
      • ‘By December or January the sittings had got very short.’
      • ‘At the end of the sitting, they can take photographs of the subject.’
    2. 1.2 A scheduled period of time when a group of people are served a meal, especially in a restaurant.
      ‘there will be two sittings for Christmas lunch’
      • ‘There were two sittings for dinner in the restaurant and shortly after boarding you were allocated your sitting and your table number which you kept with you throughout the cruise.’
      • ‘The part-time firefighters served more than 100 children with food, in two sittings.’
      • ‘There were no sittings; passengers came to one of the ship's restaurants when they felt like it, and if a table was available, they took it.’
      • ‘The Ritz serves 300 covers a day at four sittings.’
      • ‘Corrianders Restaurant are able to cater for individual sittings or larger groups.’
    3. 1.3 A period of time during which a committee or legislature is engaged in its normal business.
      • ‘Government officials said today's Parliament sitting may be very brief to accommodate the continuation of the crime talks.’
      • ‘There are just two more weeks of parliamentary sittings before the winter break, and the beginning of the period in which the Prime Minister says he'll go to the polls.’
      • ‘The measures will be put into place at the next sitting of Parliament, tentatively scheduled for March.’
      • ‘He says he will introduce legislation during the winter sitting of Parliament.’
      • ‘Who says pre-budget Parliamentary sittings have to be dull?’
      • ‘With the last sitting of state parliament upon us, it is time to write to state MPs to save the rail line.’
      • ‘A further rebuke took place during the first sitting of parliament.’
      • ‘At the regular sitting of the parliamentary group on Tuesday, no final decision was taken about the fate of the disloyal MPs.’
      • ‘Chief Minister John Osborne announced double salaries in December at the last sitting of Parliament.’
      • ‘A lot of advanced democracies still have all-night sittings, which I think are crazy.’
      • ‘He became increasingly eccentric, bursting into song or verse during parliamentary sittings and falling asleep at public meetings.’
      • ‘A special sitting of the German parliament at the beginning of October will debate the necessary resolution.’
      • ‘Today was the fourth time a serving US President has addressed a joint sitting of Parliament.’
      • ‘Williams said the meeting had to be called before the next sitting of the executive committee on Tuesday.’
      • ‘The past couple of weeks have seen the final fortnight of Parliament sittings for the year.’
      • ‘He will be the key player in the meetings of the Conference of the Presidents, which meets monthly to set out the agenda for the sittings of the European Parliament.’
      • ‘The decision to delay the new parliament's first sitting will only add to cynicism in the electorate and will be no encouragement to take part in the election.’
      • ‘Howard knew he would never get it passed in a full sitting of parliament.’
      • ‘He did not have the full sitting of parliament as he told Australians he would, only his cabinet met.’
      • ‘I hope we will make early progress in the next sitting of Parliament.’
    4. 1.4British Law A period of time when a court of law holds sessions.
      • ‘The defendant had been remanded in custody from a sitting of Wexford District Court the previous week.’
      • ‘The decision by the Court to continue circuit sittings was a significant one.’
      • ‘It certainly was a busy day in terms of court sittings locally last Wednesday.’
      • ‘He was remanded in custody at a special sitting of Cork District Court yesterday, to appear again this morning.’
      • ‘The next available Divisional Court sittings in Brampton is May 31.’
      session, meeting, assembly, plenary
      View synonyms


  • 1In a seated position.

    • ‘You may also feel light-headed or dizzy, especially when moving from a lying or sitting position to standing up.’
    • ‘She languidly draws herself up to a sitting position.’
    • ‘Chair arms should be used only if they do not obstruct your sitting position and posture’
    • ‘At the moment a large proportion of motherhood seems to be spent worrying about the fact that Tommy still can't manage to get up into a sitting position on his own.’
    • ‘She rose to a sitting position with difficulty and looked around.’
    • ‘He slowly slid down into a sitting position and let out a yawn.’
    • ‘Rothman was eventually brought to the ground by police but was put into a sitting position when he began hyperventilating.’
    • ‘The 66-year-old had slipped into a sitting position with her legs straight out, leaving her waist deep in heavy mud.’
    • ‘One of the jade Buddhas can be found in a sitting position at the moment of his enlightenment on the second floor of Wentang Hall.’
    • ‘I sighed and pushed myself up so I was in a regular sitting position.’
    • ‘He refuted the skeptics by proving that a man could still make concert-stage mayhem from a sitting position.’
    • ‘Slowly slide your back down the wall until you are in a sitting position, as though seated on an imaginary chair.’
    • ‘I sink gracefully into a sitting position on my bed.’
    • ‘The taxi driver sits in his vehicle and watches as the other driver pulls himself out from under his motorbike and raises himself to a sitting position.’
    sedentary, seated
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of an animal or bird) not running or flying.
  • 2(of an elected representative) current; present.

    ‘the resignation of the sitting congressman’
    • ‘As a Democrat living in a strong Labor seat my vote will not, baring a miracle, remove the sitting member.’
    • ‘No sitting congressman has ever previously been nominated to head the agency.’
    • ‘Not only will he have to deal with the sitting representative, there are others in his party gunning for the coveted seat and a place in the House.’
    • ‘Two hours after the historic ceremony, the current parliament's batch of sitting MPs cease to be members of parliament.’
    • ‘This study validated the widespread feeling of people about the sitting president.’
    • ‘This is the first time a sitting president has attended the Brazilian Catholic bishops' national assembly.’
    • ‘Is it possible for a sitting member of Parliament to be objective and conduct the tasks at hand on behalf of the people?’
    • ‘To unseat a sitting member is always a tough task.’
    • ‘He suggests that the minority of people who voted for this unattractive party are not constituents of the sitting Member of Parliament.’
    • ‘Under the electoral laws, any sitting member can register a party without the need for party members.’
    • ‘A number of the current sitting board members have had close associations with Mr Murdoch or his company.’
    • ‘No sitting member of Congress has been elected President since John Kennedy in 1960.’
    • ‘In recent years, only a tiny percentage of sitting members of Congress have been defeated in primaries.’
    • ‘Not surprisingly, all of the presented candidates were sitting judges.’
    • ‘We have one question, that came in actually from a sitting member of Congress.’
    • ‘The leader is elected by the sitting members of the relevant party.’
    • ‘Analysts predict he has a tough fight ahead to retain the seat, as it is rare for a sitting member to return.’
  • 3(of a hen or other bird) settled on eggs for the purpose of incubating them.

    • ‘Nests are hidden in vegetation, each lined with an ample layer of down to cover the eggs when the sitting bird is absent.’
    • ‘If the sitting bird's body does not completely cover the nest, heat may also be lost to the air outside the nest.’