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  • pishacha (Hinduism)

    angel and demon: In the religions of the East: …attack sadhus (saintly persons), and pishachas, beings who haunt places where violent deaths have occurred. Buddhists often view their demons as forces that inhibit humans from achieving nirvana (bliss or the extinction of desire). Included among such beings are Mara, an arch tempter who, with his daughters, Rati (Desire), Raga…

  • Pishīn (Pakistan)

    Pishīn, town, Balochistān province, Pakistan. The present town, founded by the British as a military and civil station in 1883, is a market centre and has a noteworthy rest house with a fine garden. It is connected by road with nearby Quetta city. Pishīn district is located north of Quetta district

  • Pishpek (national capital, Kyrgyzstan)

    Bishkek, city and capital of Kyrgyzstan. It lies in the Chu River valley near the Kyrgyz Mountains at an elevation of 2,500–3,000 feet (750–900 metres). Bishkek is situated along the Alaarcha and Alamedin rivers and intersects in the north with the Bolshoy (Great) Chuysky Canal. In 1825 the Uzbek

  • pīshṭāq (architecture)

    Islamic arts: Architecture in Iran: It is the pīshṭāq, a formal gateway that served to emphasize a building’s presence and importance.

  • Pisidia (ancient region, Turkey)

    Pisidia, ancient region of southern Asia Minor, located north of Pamphylia and west of Isauria and Cilicia. Most of the district was composed of the abrupt, north–south-trending limestone ranges of the Taurus Mountains, providing refuge for a lawless population that stubbornly resisted successive

  • Pisidian language

    Pisidian language, poorly attested member of the ancient Anatolian languages. Documentation for Pisidian is extremely sparse, comprising some two dozen tomb inscriptions consisting only of names and patronymics. The specific form of the latter, with an -s suffix matching that of Luwian, Lycian,

  • Pisier, Marie-France (French actress and writer)

    Marie-France Claire Pisier, French actress and writer (born May 10, 1944, Dalat, French Indochina [now Da Lat, Vietnam]—found dead April 24, 2011, Saint-Cyr-sur-Mer, France), gained international recognition as the haughty Colette Tazzi in three films by director François Truffaut: the segment

  • Pisistratus (tyrant of Athens)

    Peisistratus, tyrant of ancient Athens whose unification of Attica and consolidation and rapid improvement of Athens’s prosperity helped to make possible the city’s later preeminence in Greece. In 594 Peisistratus’s mother’s relative, the reformer Solon, had improved the economic position of the

  • Piske Halakhot (work by Asher ben Jehiel)

    Asher ben Jehiel: His code, the Piske Halakhot (“Decisions on the Laws”; compiled between 1307 and 1314), based largely on the Palestinian Talmud (as distinct from the Babylonian Talmud), deals strictly with the Talmudic laws. Asher considered the Talmud a supreme authority and felt free to disregard the opinions of the…

  • pisky (English folklore)

    Pixie, in the folklore of southwestern England, tiny elflike spirit or mischievous fairy dressed in green who dances in the moonlight to the music of frogs and crickets. Its favourite pastimes are leading travelers astray and frightening young maidens. Pixies also delight in rapping on walls,

  • PISL (communications)

    Plains Indian sign language (PISL), system of fixed hand and finger positions symbolizing ideas, the meanings of which were known to the majority of the Plains peoples. In addition to aiding communication between the deaf, PISL was used for a broad range of interactions—for hunting and other

  • Píslarsaga (work by Magnusson)

    Jón Magnússon: …parson and author of the Píslarsaga (“Passion Story”), one of the strangest documents of cultural and psychic delusion in all literature.

  • Pisma iz Frantsii i Italii (work by Herzen)

    Aleksandr Ivanovich Herzen: Life in exile.: …brilliant but rather confused works, Pisma iz Frantsii i Italii (“Letters from France and Italy”) and S togo berega (From the Other Shore). His disillusionment was vastly increased by his wife’s infidelity with the radical German poet Georg Herwegh and by her death in 1852.

  • Pisma ob izuchenii prirody (work by Herzen)

    Aleksandr Ivanovich Herzen: Early life.: …nauke (“Dilettantism in Science”) and Pisma ob izuchenii prirody (“Letters on the Study of Nature”), and a novel of social criticism, Kto vinovat? (“Who Is to Blame?”), in the new “naturalistic” manner of Russian fiction.

  • Pisma russkogo puteshestvennika (work by Karamzin)

    Nikolay Mikhaylovich Karamzin: …described his impressions in his Pisma russkogo puteshestvennika Letters of a Russian Traveller, 1789–1790), the most important of his contributions to a monthly review, Moskovsky zhurnal (1791–92; “Moscow Journal”), that he founded on his return. Written in a self-revealing style influenced by Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Laurence Sterne, the “Letters” helped…

  • Pismo K Syezdu (document by Lenin)

    Lenin’s Testament, two-part document dictated by Vladimir I. Lenin on Dec. 23–26, 1922, and Jan. 4, 1923, and addressed to a future Communist Party Congress. It contained guideline proposals for changes in the Soviet political system and concise portrait assessments of six party leaders (Joseph

  • Piso, Gaius Calpurnius (Roman statesman)

    Lucan: …leaders in the conspiracy of Piso (Gaius Calpurnius) to assassinate Nero. When the conspiracy was discovered, he was compelled to commit suicide by opening a vein. According to Tacitus, he died repeating a passage from one of his poems describing the death of a wounded soldier.

  • Piso, Gnaeus Calpurnius (Roman governor of Syria)

    Germanicus: …into conflict with Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso, whom Tiberius had installed as governor of Syria. Although Piso criticized and sometimes frustrated his decisions, Germanicus managed to settle the Armenian succession, organize the previously independent states of Cappadocia and Commagene into provinces, and negotiate successfully with Artabanus III of Parthia.

  • pisolite (rock)

    Pisolite, spheroidal crystalline particle larger than 2 millimetres in diameter (see

  • Piss Christ (work by Serrano)

    Andres Serrano: ), American photographer whose Piss Christ (1987), an image of a crucifix submerged in urine, resulted in a storm of controversy and was a central element in the so-called culture wars of the late 1980s and 1990s. The piece and others of a similar confrontational nature caused a reexamination…

  • pissaladiera (food)

    Côte d'Azur: Pissaladiera comes from Nice; this is an onion flan spiced with anchovies and black olives. Ratatouia (ratatouille), a vegetable stew of tomatoes, eggplant, and green peppers, also comes from Nice.

  • Pissarides, Christopher A. (British Cypriot economist)

    Christopher A. Pissarides, British Cypriot economist who was a corecipient, with Peter A. Diamond and Dale T. Mortensen, of the 2010 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences “for their analysis of markets with search frictions.” The theoretical framework collectively developed by the three men—which

  • Pissarides, Christopher Antoniou (British Cypriot economist)

    Christopher A. Pissarides, British Cypriot economist who was a corecipient, with Peter A. Diamond and Dale T. Mortensen, of the 2010 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences “for their analysis of markets with search frictions.” The theoretical framework collectively developed by the three men—which

  • Pissarro, Camille (French artist)

    Camille Pissarro, painter and printmaker who was a key figure in the history of Impressionism. Pissarro was the only artist to show his work in all eight Impressionist group exhibitions; throughout his career he remained dedicated to the idea of such alternative forums of exhibition. He

  • Pissevache Fall (waterfall, Switzerland)

    Pissevache Fall, waterfall on the Salanfe River, a tributary of the Rhône, in Valais canton, Switzerland, a short distance north of the village of Vernayaz. It attains its maximum flow in spring and summer and is best seen during the morning. The fall provides power for a hydroelectric power

  • Pissis, Mount (mountain, Argentina)

    Andes Mountains: Physiography of the Central Andes: …Bonete, Ojos del Salado, and Pissis surpass 20,000 feet.

  • Pissodes strobi (insect)

    pine weevil: The white pine weevil (Pissodes strobi) of North America kills the central growth shoot of white pine trees, forcing one of the side shoots to take over the upward growth of the tree. This results in bends in the tree trunk and reduces its value as…

  • Pista (polychaete genus)

    annelid: Annotated classification: Terebella, Pista, Thelepus. Order Sabellida (feather dusters) Sedentary; head concealed with featherlike filamentous branchiae; body divided into thorax and abdomen; tube mucoid or calcareous; size, minute to 50 cm; examples of genera: Sabella,

  • pistachio (plant)

    Pistachio, (Pistacia vera), small tree of the cashew family (Anacardiaceae) and its edible seeds, grown in dry lands in warm or temperate climates. The pistachio tree is believed to be indigenous to Iran. It is widely cultivated from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean region and in California. The

  • pistachio nut (food)

    Pistacia: Commercial pistachio nuts are extensively used as food and for yellowish green colouring in confections.

  • Pistacia (plant genus)

    Pistacia, genus of nine species of aromatic trees and shrubs in the cashew family (Anacardiaceae). Most species are native to Eurasia, with one species in southwestern North America and another in the Canary Islands. The genus includes the economically important pistachio (Pistacia vera) as well as

  • Pistacia chinensis (plant)

    Pistacia: The Chinese pistachio (P. chinensis) is a tall ornamental tree with scarlet fruits and colourful autumn foliage. The mastic tree (P. lentiscus) and the turpentine tree, or terebinth (P. terebinthus), produce sweet-smelling gums used in medicine. Mastic also is used in liqueurs and varnishes. Commercial pistachio…

  • Pistacia lentiscus

    chewing gum: …the sweet resin of the mastic tree (so named after the custom) as a tooth cleanser and breath freshener. New England colonists borrowed from the Indians the custom of chewing aromatic and astringent spruce resin for the same purposes. Similarly, for centuries inhabitants of the Yucatán Peninsula have chewed the…

  • Pistacia terebinthus (plant)

    Pistacia: lentiscus) and the turpentine tree, or terebinth (P. terebinthus), produce sweet-smelling gums used in medicine. Mastic also is used in liqueurs and varnishes. Commercial pistachio nuts are extensively used as food and for yellowish green colouring in confections.

  • Pistacia vera (plant)

    Pistachio, (Pistacia vera), small tree of the cashew family (Anacardiaceae) and its edible seeds, grown in dry lands in warm or temperate climates. The pistachio tree is believed to be indigenous to Iran. It is widely cultivated from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean region and in California. The

  • piste (fencing mat)

    fencing: Fencing area: The piste, or fencing strip, made of metal or another conductive material, is between 1.5 and 2 metres (4.9 and 6.6 feet) wide and 14 metres (46 feet) long, with an extension, or runback, of 1.5 metres at either end. The piste has a centre line,…

  • Pister, Hermann (German SS officer)

    Hermann Pister, German SS officer who was the second and last commandant of the Buchenwald concentration camp, near Weimar, Germany. After his predecessor, Karl Otto Koch, departed Buchenwald at the end of 1941 to oversee the Majdanek camp, Pister, a World War I veteran of the German navy, was

  • Pister, Hermann Franz Josef (German SS officer)

    Hermann Pister, German SS officer who was the second and last commandant of the Buchenwald concentration camp, near Weimar, Germany. After his predecessor, Karl Otto Koch, departed Buchenwald at the end of 1941 to oversee the Majdanek camp, Pister, a World War I veteran of the German navy, was

  • Pistia stratiotes (plant)

    Africa: Sudd: …other water plants—including the floating Nile cabbage (Pistia stratiotes)—form masses of waterlogged plant material that are largely unproductive and are a nuisance to fishing and navigation. Pistia has become an unwelcome invader of Lake Kariba, the body of water formed by the impounding (1959) of the Zambezi River in the…

  • pistil (plant anatomy)

    Pistil, the female reproductive part of a flower. The pistil, centrally located, typically consists of a swollen base, the ovary, which contains the potential seeds, or ovules; a stalk, or style, arising from the ovary; and a pollen-receptive tip, the stigma, variously shaped and often sticky. In

  • pistillate flower (botany)

    flower: Form and types: …flower that lacks stamens is pistillate, or female, while one that lacks pistils is said to be staminate, or male. When the same plant bears unisexual flowers of both sexes, it is said to be monoecious (e.g., tuberous begonia, hazel, oak, corn); when the male and female flowers are on…

  • Pistis Sophia (Coptic Gnostic text)

    Christianity: Early church: The Pistis Sophia (3rd century) is preoccupied with the question of who finally will be saved. Those who are saved must renounce the world completely and follow the pure ethic of love and compassion so that they can be identified with Jesus and become rays of…

  • Pistoia (Italy)

    Pistoia, city in the Toscana (Tuscany) regione, north-central Italy. Pistoia city lies in the valley of the Ombrone River, with a semicircle of pleasant hills (part of the Apennines) to the north. The city lies about 18 miles (29 km) northwest of Florence. Known in ancient times as Pistoria, it was

  • Pistoia, Synod of (Roman Catholicism)

    Synod of Pistoia, a diocesan meeting held in 1786 that was important in the history of Jansenism, a nonorthodox, pessimistic, and rigoristic movement in the Roman Catholic church. The synod, presided over by Scipione de’ Ricci, bishop of Pistoia-Prato, and under the patronage of Peter Leopold,

  • pistol (weapon)

    Pistol, small firearm designed for one-hand use. According to one theory, pistols owe their name to the city of Pistoia, Italy, where handguns were made as early as the late 15th century. Dating from the 16th century, the earliest practical pistols typically were single-shot muzzle-loading arms

  • Pistol (fictional character)

    Pistol, fictional character, one of the sidekicks of Falstaff, who appears in Henry IV, parts 1 (written c. 1596–97) and 2 (written c. 1597–98); Henry V (first performed 1599); and The Merry Wives of Windsor (written between 1597 and

  • Pistol Annies (American music group)

    Miranda Lambert: …also saw the debut of Pistol Annies, a group that Lambert had formed with friends Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley. The trio’s well-regarded Hell on Heels (2011) was swiftly followed by Lambert’s own Four the Record (2011), which featured the hit single “Over You,” an elegiac ballad she wrote with…

  • Pistol Pete (American basketball player)

    Pete Maravich, American basketball player who was the most prolific scorer in the history of Division I men’s college basketball and who helped transform the game in the 1960s and ’70s with his ballhandling and passing wizardry. A spectacular shooting star, Maravich rocketed through college and

  • pistol shrimp (invertebrate)

    shrimp: The pistol shrimp, Alpheus, which grows to 3.5 cm (1.4 inches), stuns prey by snapping together the fingers of the large chelae, or pincers. In the Red Sea, species of Alpheus share their burrows with goby fishes. The fishes signal warnings of danger to the shrimp…

  • Pistolet Pulemyot Degtyarev (firearm)

    small arm: The submachine gun: The PPD was fed by a drum-shaped magazine containing 71 7.62-mm cartridges, and it fired at a rate of 900 rounds per minute—far too fast for accuracy. In the United States, John T. Thompson’s submachine gun, chambered for the .45-inch Colt pistol cartridge, was adopted by…

  • Pistoletto, Michelangelo (Italian artist)

    Western painting: Germany and Italy: Joseph Beuys and Arte Povera: …involved in that movement—Jannis Kounellis, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Luciano Fabro, Giovanni Anselmo, and Mario Merz preeminently—were united in attempting to shake off their nation’s tradition-bound view of aesthetics, but they were also deeply engaged with social issues and with reinstalling a metaphysical content into art. Like Beuys, they often made use…

  • piston (engineering)

    history of flight: Pistons in the air: During World War I several farsighted European entrepreneurs, emboldened by wartime progress in aviation, envisioned the possibilities of postwar airline travel. For many months after the war, normal rail travel in Europe remained problematic and irregular because of the shortage of…

  • piston (pipe organ)

    keyboard instrument: Stop and key mechanisms: …a series of buttons, or pistons, placed below each manual, where they are conveniently operated by the organist’s thumbs. The pistons may easily be made adjustable so that the organist can quickly alter the combination of stops controlled by each one.

  • piston and cylinder (engineering)

    Piston and cylinder, in mechanical engineering, sliding cylinder with a closed head (the piston) that is moved reciprocally in a slightly larger cylindrical chamber (the cylinder) by or against pressure of a fluid, as in an engine or pump. The cylinder of a steam engine (q.v.) is closed by plates

  • piston corer (tool)

    undersea exploration: Exploration of the seafloor and the Earth’s crust: …cores are taken by the piston corer. In this device, a closely fitted piston attached to the end of the lowering cable is installed inside the coring tube. When the coring tube is driven into the ocean floor, friction exerts a downward pull on the core sample. The hydrostatic pressure…

  • piston die-casting (metallurgy)

    die-casting: In the piston, or gooseneck, process the plunger and its cylinder are submerged in the molten metal, the metal being admitted through a hole in the top of the cylinder when the plunger is retracted; the advance of the plunger forces the metal into the die cavity…

  • piston drill

    mining: History: Mechanical piston drills utilizing attached bits on drill rods and moving up and down like a piston in a cylinder date from 1843. In Germany in 1853 a drill that resembled modern air drills was invented. Piston drills were superseded by hammer drills run by compressed…

  • piston engine

    logistics: New technology: The piston-engine transports of World War II vintage that carried out the Berlin airlift of 1948–49 had a capacity of about four tons (3,640 kilograms) and a maximum range of 1,500 miles (2,400 kilometres). The U.S. C-141 jet transport, which went into service in 1965, had…

  • piston pump (engineering)

    pump: Positive displacement pumps.: Piston and plunger pumps consist of a cylinder in which a piston or plunger moves back and forth. In plunger pumps the plunger moves through a stationary packed seal and is pushed into the fluid, while in piston pumps the packed seal is carried on…

  • piston ring (engineering)

    piston and cylinder: Pistons are usually equipped with piston rings. These are circular metal rings that fit into grooves in the piston walls and assure a snug fit of the piston inside the cylinder. They help provide a seal to prevent leakage of compressed gases around the piston and to prevent lubricating oil…

  • Piston, Walter (American composer)

    Walter Piston, composer noted for his symphonic and chamber music and his influence in the development of the 20th-century Neoclassical style in the United States. After graduating from the Massachusetts Normal Art School (now the Massachusetts College of Art and Design), Piston studied music at

  • Piston, Walter Hamor (American composer)

    Walter Piston, composer noted for his symphonic and chamber music and his influence in the development of the 20th-century Neoclassical style in the United States. After graduating from the Massachusetts Normal Art School (now the Massachusetts College of Art and Design), Piston studied music at

  • Pistoria (Italy)

    Pistoia, city in the Toscana (Tuscany) regione, north-central Italy. Pistoia city lies in the valley of the Ombrone River, with a semicircle of pleasant hills (part of the Apennines) to the north. The city lies about 18 miles (29 km) northwest of Florence. Known in ancient times as Pistoria, it was

  • Pistorius, Oscar (South African athlete)

    Oscar Pistorius, South African track-and-field sprinter and bilateral below-the-knee amputee who, at the 2012 London Games, became the first amputee to compete in an Olympic track event. He also was the first Paralympian to win a medal in open competition, when he earned a silver medal for his

  • Pistorius, Oscar Leonard Carl (South African athlete)

    Oscar Pistorius, South African track-and-field sprinter and bilateral below-the-knee amputee who, at the 2012 London Games, became the first amputee to compete in an Olympic track event. He also was the first Paralympian to win a medal in open competition, when he earned a silver medal for his

  • Pisum sativum (legume)

    Pea, (Pisum sativum), herbaceous annual plant in the family Fabaceae, grown virtually worldwide for its edible seeds. Peas can be bought fresh, canned, or frozen, and dried peas are commonly used in soups. Some varieties, including sugar peas and snow peas, produce pods that are edible and are

  • Pisum sativum macrocarpon (legume)

    pea: Some varieties, including sugar peas and snow peas, produce pods that are edible and are eaten raw or cooked like green beans; they are popular in East Asian cuisines. The plants are fairly easy to grow, and the seeds are a good source of protein and dietary fibre.

  • pit (ground cavity)

    mining: Surface mining: …in a large hole, or pit, being formed in the process of extracting a mineral. It can also result in a portion of a hilltop being removed. In strip mining a long, narrow strip of mineral is uncovered by a dragline, large shovel, or similar type of excavator. After the…

  • Pit and the Pendulum, The (film by Corman [1961])

    Roger Corman: …including House of Usher (1960), The Pit and the Pendulum (1961), The Raven (1963), The Haunted Palace (1963), and The Masque of the Red Death (1964). All but one of the Poe films starred Vincent Price, and these films featured such other established actors as Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff, Ray…

  • Pit and the Pendulum, The (story by Poe)

    The Pit and the Pendulum, Gothic horror story by Edgar Allan Poe, first published in The Gift (an annual giftbook of occasional verse and stories) in 1843. The work helped secure its author’s reputation as a master of lurid Gothic suspense. Like many of Poe’s stories, “The Pit and the Pendulum” is

  • pit bull terrier (dog)

    Pit bull, fighting dog developed in 19th-century England, Scotland, and Ireland from bulldog and terrier ancestry for hunting, specifically capturing and restraining semi-feral livestock. The name has been applied historically to several breeds of dogs—including the bull terrier, American

  • pit geometry

    mining: Pit geometry: Deposits mined by open-pit techniques are generally divided into horizontal layers called benches. The thickness (that is, the height) of the benches depends on the type of deposit, the mineral being mined, and the equipment being used; for large mines it is on…

  • pit house (shelter)

    Japanese art: Jōmon period: Remains of pit houses have been found arranged in horseshoe formations at various Early Jōmon sites. Each house consisted of a shallow pit with a tamped earthen floor and a grass roof designed so that rainwater runoff could be collected in storage jars.

  • pit membrane (biology)

    wood: Ultrastructure and chemical composition: Pit membranes vary in structure; in softwood tracheids they possess a central thickening (torus), whereas in other cell types they are made of randomly arranged microfibrils.

  • pit organ (anatomy)

    snake: Form and function: …of a heat-sensitive depression, the loreal pit, located between the eye and the nostril, and the venom apparatus, which enabled them to stay in one place and wait for their prey, rather than engaging in a continuous active search for food. Similarly, some of the largest nonvenomous snakes (boas, anacondas,…

  • pit saw (tool)

    hand tool: Saw: …this purpose were generally called pit saws because they were operated in the vertical plane by two people, one of whom, the pitman, sometimes stood in a pit below the timber or under a trestle supporting the timber being sawed. The other stood on the timber above, pulling the saw…

  • pit viper (snake)

    Pit viper, any species of viper (subfamily Crotalinae) that has, in addition to two movable fangs, a heat-sensitive pit organ between each eye and nostril which together help it accurately aim its strike at its warm-blooded prey. Pit vipers are found from deserts to rainforests, primarily in the

  • Pit, The (novella by Onetti)

    Juan Carlos Onetti: …the novella El pozo (1939; The Pit), treats the aimless life of a man lost within a city where he is unable to communicate with others. The book’s complex fusion of reality with fantasy and inner experience makes it one of the first distinctively modern Spanish American novels. In the…

  • Pit, The (work by Norris)

    Frank Norris: …second novel in the trilogy, The Pit (1903), deals with wheat speculation on the Chicago Board of Trade. The third novel, Wolf, unwritten at Norris’s death, was to have shown the American-grown wheat relieving a famine-stricken village in Europe. Vandover and the Brute, posthumously published in 1914, is a study…

  • pit-pit grass (plant)

    grassland: Origin: …or in New Guinea by pit-pit grass (Miscanthus floridulus), both of which grow 3 metres (9.8 feet) tall.

  • pita bread

    baking: Flat breads: Tortillas and pita bread are representative examples. Traditional tortillas are made from a paste of ground corn kernels that have been soaked in hot lime water. Corn tortillas contain no leaveners, although a wheat-flour version, which is gradually replacing the corn product, frequently contains a small amount…

  • Pitalkhora (archaeological site, India)

    South Asian arts: Indian sculpture in the 2nd and 1st centuries bce: relief sculpture of western India: …India have been found at Pitalkhora. The colossal plinth of a monastery decorated with a row of elephants, the large figures of the door guardians, and several fragments recovered during the course of excavations are among the more important remains. A great proportion of the work represents an advance over…

  • Pitangus (bird)

    Kiskadee, (genus Pitangus), either of two similar New World bird species of flycatchers (family Tyrannidae, order Passeriformes), named for the call of the great kiskadee, or derby flycatcher (P. sulphuratus). The great kiskadee is reddish brown on the back, wings, and tail. The throat is white,

  • Pitangus sulphuratus (bird)

    kiskadee: …for the call of the great kiskadee, or derby flycatcher (P. sulphuratus). The great kiskadee is reddish brown on the back, wings, and tail. The throat is white, the crown and sides of the head are black, and a white band surrounds the crown, which is surmounted by a yellow…

  • pitaya dulce (plant)

    Organ-pipe cactus, (Stenocereus thurberi), large species of cactus (family Cactaceae), native to Mexico and to southern Arizona in the United States. Organ-pipe cactus is characteristic of warmer rocky parts of the Sonoran Desert in Baja California, Sonora (Mexico), and southern Arizona. It and

  • Pitcairn Aviation, Inc. (American airline)

    Eastern Air Lines, Inc., former American airline that served the northeastern and southeastern United States. Founded by Harold Frederick Pitcairn (1897–1960) in 1928 as Pitcairn Aviation, Inc., the company was sold the following year and became Eastern Air Transport, one of the nearly four dozen

  • Pitcairn Island (island, Pacific Ocean)

    Pitcairn Island, isolated volcanic island in the south-central Pacific Ocean, 1,350 miles (2,170 km) southeast of Tahiti. It is the only inhabited island of the British overseas territory of Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie, and Oeno Islands, which is commonly referred to as the Pitcairn Islands or as

  • Pitcairn, Harold Frederick (American businessman)

    Eastern Air Lines, Inc.: Founded by Harold Frederick Pitcairn (1897–1960) in 1928 as Pitcairn Aviation, Inc., the company was sold the following year and became Eastern Air Transport, one of the nearly four dozen divisions of North American Aviation, Inc. On March 29, 1938, it was incorporated as an independent company…

  • pitch (sound)

    sound reception: Auditory sensitivity of fishes: …distinguish between tones of different frequencies is of special interest. Two studies dealing with this problem have shown that the frequency change just detectable is about four cycles for a tone of 50 hertz and increases regularly, slowly at first, then more rapidly as the frequency is raised.

  • pitch (music)

    Pitch, in music, position of a single sound in the complete range of sound. Sounds are higher or lower in pitch according to the frequency of vibration of the sound waves producing them. A high frequency (e.g., 880 hertz [Hz; cycles per second]) is perceived as a high pitch and a low frequency

  • pitch (speech)

    Pitch, in speech, the relative highness or lowness of a tone as perceived by the ear, which depends on the number of vibrations per second produced by the vocal cords. Pitch is the main acoustic correlate of tone and intonation

  • pitch (chemical compound)

    Pitch, in the chemical-process industries, the black or dark brown residue obtained by distilling coal tar, wood tar, fats, fatty acids, or fatty oils. Coal tar pitch is a soft to hard and brittle substance containing chiefly aromatic resinous compounds along with aromatic and other hydrocarbons

  • pitch (geology)

    strike: Pitch is the angle between the axis of the feature and the strike of the plane containing the axis.

  • pitch (motion)

    ship: Ship motions in response to the sea: … (rotation about a longitudinal axis), pitch (rotation about a transverse axis), heave (vertical motion), and surge (longitudinal motion superimposed on the steady propulsive motion). All six are unwanted except in the special circumstance where yaw is necessary in changing course.

  • pitch angle (propeller)

    helicopter: Principles of flight and operation: …propeller, the rotor has a pitch angle, which is the angle between the horizontal plane of rotation of the rotor disc and the chord line of the airfoil. The pilot uses the collective and cyclic pitch control (see below) to vary this pitch angle. In a fixed-wing aircraft, the angle…

  • Pitch Black (film by Twohy [2000])

    Vin Diesel: …Riddick in the science-fiction film Pitch Black (2000) and reprised the character in two more films, The Chronicles of Riddick (2004) and Riddick (2013).

  • pitch centre (music)

    Chinese music: Scales and modes: …it seems to become the pitch centre. Such variations of pitch centre within a scale yield different modes. In the Western traditional systems most scales use seven tones that can be transposed and that contain modes. For example, C major (C–D–E–F–G–A–B) can be made into the Dorian church mode by…

  • pitch control (helicopter)

    helicopter: Principles of flight and operation: …uses the collective and cyclic pitch control (see below) to vary this pitch angle. In a fixed-wing aircraft, the angle of attack (the angle of the wing in relation to the relative wind) is important in determining lift. The same is true in a helicopter, where the angle of attack…

  • Pitch Lake (asphalt deposit, Trinidad and Tobago)

    Pitch Lake, natural asphalt deposit at La Brea, on the southwestern coast of Trinidad, Trinidad and Tobago, southeastern West Indies. Known to European explorers since the 16th century for its large surface exposure of pure asphalt, the deposit covers some 100 acres (40 hectares) and has a maximum

  • pitch lake (geology)

    Pitch lake, large surface deposit of natural asphalt, a mixture of heavy oils that is left after the lighter, more volatile components of a crude-oil seepage have evaporated. An example is Guanoco Lake (also known as Bermúdez Lake) in Venezuela, which covers more than 445 hectares (1,100 acres) and

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