1. an insignificant person, a ‘nobody’; thus drunk as a pissant, very drunk; game as a pissant, very brave.
|Folk-Say 150: Drank about fifteen bottles [...] Got pie-yed as a p---ant.‘South’ in Botkin|
|Call House Madam (1943) 433: You son-of-a-pissant!|
|(con. 1861-5) Life of Billy Yank 27: Solder: Leslie Nickname: Piss-ant Postion: Artist.|
|Savage Night (1991) 7: You stupid pissant [...] What’s the idea?|
|(con. 1940s) Do Not Go Gentle (1962) 119: You friggin’ piss ants.|
|Great Santini (1977) 309: You sorry damn pissant.|
|Southern Discomfort (1983) 28: What’s that pissant up to now?|
|Mad Cows 173: I’ll take you to court, you lily-livered piss ant.|
|Chopper 4 2: He was barely five feet tall, and so the nickname Piss Ant was slightly unkind, but it fitted.|
|Chicago Trib. ‘The Onion’ 1 Nov. TAB-5/2: Abnormally growing cells consistently make the ‘complete dick move’ of prodsucing false-positive signals. Cancer cell mutate into even cockier pissants .|
|Scrublands [ebook] [of one who cannot hold their drink] ‘He’d come in here for a drink on occasion. Could put it away, too. Not a pissant like you’.|
2. attrib. use of sense 1.
|Fever Kill 17: With that swagger, the pissant rage in his eyes, the curled lip.|
1. to mess around.
|Aus. Lang. 87: Someone is pissanting around when he is messing about.|
|Come in Spinner (1960) 329: I’ve been pissantin’ round the Northern Territory most of the time.|
|Summer Glare 224: Why does the bastard go pissanting around in Tamworth without her?|
2. to defeat, to outwit.
|Aus. Lang. 87: We pissant someone when we defeat or outwit him.|