wait-a-bit, noun

Origin:
Afrikaans, South African DutchShow more Translation of Afrikaans wag-’n-bietjie, earlier South African Dutch wacht-een-beetje, see wag-’n-bietjie.
In full wait-a-bit thorn, or (obsolete) wait-a-bit bush: wag-’n-bietjie. Also attributive.
1785 [see wag-’n-bietjie].
1857 D. Livingstone Missionary Trav. 61The adjacent country is all covered with low thorny scrub, with grass, and, here and there, clumps of the ‘wait-a-bit thorn’, or Acacia Detinens.
1866 J. Leyland Adventures 120The name given to the wait-a-bit thorn is very expressive and appropriate. In form it much resembles a small hook. It is the worst kind of bush for tearing anything it comes in contact with.
1871 J. McKay Reminisc. 140Torn and scratched by ‘wait-a-bit’ thorns, tripped and half strangled by parasitical monkey-rope, the company tore away through the treacherous bush.
1886 G.A. Farini Through Kalahari Desert 170The wait-a-bit thorns disputed my progress, and I was forced to wriggle through, snake-like, on my stomach.
1899 R.B. & J.D.S. Woodward Natal Birds 37A favourite haunt of theirs is the ‘Wait-a-bit’ hedges, in the centre of which they (sc. the birds) often rest utterly out of reach.
1909 Lady S. Wilson S. Afr. Mem. 308Round the edge of these groups..lies slyly hidden the ‘wait-a-bit’ bush, according to the literal translation from the Dutch, whose thorny entanglements no one can gauge unless fairly caught. [Note] Wacht-een-bietze.
1929 J. Stevenson-Hamilton Low-Veld 50Of all those coming under the embracive title of ‘wait-a-bit’, the worst to my mind is the umkaiya (Acacia apallens).
1940 J. Buchan Memory Hold-the-Door 119You climb through bare foothills where the only vegetation is the wait-a-bit thorn.
1964 G. Campbell Old Dusty 50Barbed wire and fish hooks are like velvet compared with the wait-a-bit thorn.
1972 A. Scholefield Wild Dog Running 69Several wagoners had hacked their own paths through the wait-a-bit thorn.
wag-’n-bietjie. Also attributive.

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18571972