Middle English, probably of Low German or North Germanic origin, and the English form a corruption or contraction, from Old Norse biti, probably ultimately from a variant of Proto-Germanic *bitiz. Compare Swedish beting and Danish beding.
bitts pl (plural only)
- (nautical, plural only) A frame composed of two strong oak timbers (bitt-heads) fixed vertically in the fore part of a ship, bolted to the deck beams to which are secured the cables when the ship rides to anchor
- An etymological dictionary of the English language, p. 65
- Oxford English Dictionary, 1884–1928, and First Supplement, 1933.