1. That which happens without human design or forethought; chance; accident; hazard; fortune; fate. But save my life, which lot before your foot doth lay. (Spenser)
2. Anything (as a die, pebble, ball, or slip of paper) used in determining a question by chance, or without man’s choice or will; as, to cast or draw lots. The lot is cast into the lap, but the whole disposing thereof is of the lord. (Prov. Xvi. 33) If we draw lots, he speeds. (Shak)
3. The part, or fate, which falls to one, as it were, by chance, or without his planning. O visions ill foreseen! Each day’s lots enough to bear. (Milton) He was but born to try The lot of man to suffer and to die. (Pope)
4. A separate portion; a number of things taken collectively; as, a lot of stationery; colloquially, sometimes of people; as, a sorry lot; a bad lot. I, this winter, met with a very large lot of english heads, chiefly of the reign of James i. (Walpole)
5. A distinct portion or plot of land, usually smaller than a field; as, a building lot in a city. The defendants leased a house and lot in the city of new York. (Kent)
6. A large quantity or number; a great deal; as, to spend a lot of money; lots of people think so. He wrote to her . . . He might be detained in london by a lot of business. (W. Black)
7. A prize in a lottery. To cast in one’s lot with, to share the fortunes of. To cast lots, to use or throw a die, or some other instrument, by the unforeseen turn or position of which, an event is by previous agreement determined. To draw lots, to determine an event, or make a decision, by drawing one thing from a number whose marks are concealed from the drawer. To pay scot and lot, to pay taxes according to one’s ability. See Scot.
Origin: as. Hlot; akin to hleotan to cast lots, os. Hlt lot, D. Lot, g. Loos, OHG. Lz, Icel. Hlutr, Sw. Lott, dan. Lod, goth. Hlauts. Cf. Allot, Lotto, Lottery.