pith

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pith

(pith),
1. The center of a hair.
2. The spinal cord and medulla oblongata.
3. To pierce the medulla of an animal with a sharp instrument introduced at the base of the skull.
[A.S. pitha]

pith

(pĭth)
n.
a. The soft inner substance of a feather or hair.
b. The spinal cord.
tr.v. pithed, pithing, piths
To sever or destroy the spinal cord of, usually by inserting a needle into the vertebral canal.

pith

(pith)
1. The center of a hair.
2. The spinal cord and medulla oblongata.
3. To pierce the medulla of an animal with a sharp instrument introduced at the base of the skull.
[A.S. pitha]

pith

or

medulla

the core of a DICOTYLEDON stem, containing PARENCHYMA cells that have a storage function.

pith

soft, spongy, plant tissue.
References in classic literature ?
It is the effect of anything completely and consummately artificial, in human shape, that the person impresses us as an unreality and as having hardly pith enough to cast a shadow upon the floor.
Hunger conspired with fatigue to crush him, for a man's system is not greatly restored and fortified by a diet of roots, the pith of plants, such as the Mele, or the fruit of the doum palm-tree; and yet, according to his own calculations, Joe was enabled to push on about twenty miles to the westward.
Next morning, we had a note from Miss Smith, recounting shortly and accurately the very incidents which I had seen, but the pith of the letter lay in the postscript: