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[pit-fawl] /ˈpɪtˌfɔl/

a lightly covered and unnoticeable pit prepared as a trap for people or animals.
any trap or danger for the unwary:
the pitfall of excessive pride.
an unsuspected difficulty or danger
a trap in the form of a concealed pit, designed to catch men or wild animals

c.1300, “concealed hole,” a type of animal trap, from pit (n.1) + fall (n.). Extended sense of “any hidden danger” is first recorded early 15c.


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