Definition of cockpit noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈkɒkpɪt//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈkɑːkpɪt//
Parts of a plane, Parts of boats and ships
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the area in a plane, boat or racing car where the pilot or driver sits See related entries: Parts of a plane, Parts of boats and ships Word Originlate 16th cent. relating to a pit where cockfights are held: from cock + pit ‘a hole in the ground’. The current sense dates from the early 20th cent. and derives from an early 18th-cent. nautical term denoting an area in the aft lower deck of a man-of-war where the wounded were taken, later coming to mean ‘the “pit” or well from which a yacht is steered’; hence the place housing the controls of other vehicles.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: cockpit