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  1. present participle of pick


picking (plural pickings)

  1. A gathering to pick fruit.
    We went to a strawberry picking last June.
  2. (usually pluralized) Items remaining after others have selected the best; scraps, as of food.
    • 1899, F. Marion Crawford, Via Crucis, ch. 9:
      Gilbert wandered through . . .the haunts of ravenous dogs and homeless cats that kept themselves alive on the choice pickings of the city's garbage.
  3. (usually pluralized) Income or other gains, especially if obtained in an unscrupulous or objectionable manner.
    • 1919, Anthony Hope, The Secret of the Tower, ch. 11:
      He liked the pickings which the job brought him much better than the job itself.
  4. Something picked or pulled out.
    The schoolboy flicked his nose pickings across the classroom.
  5. The act of making a choice; selection.
  6. The final finishing of woven fabrics by removing burs, etc.
  7. The removal of defects from electrotype plates.
  8. Dabbing in stoneworking.


  • (items remaining after others have selected the best): leftovers
  • (unscrupulously acquired gains): See Thesaurus:booty

Derived terms[edit]