- noun the backside, buttocks, anus. This fairly common term is from Yiddish kiste, in turn deriving from Middle and Old Germanic Kista and from the Latin cista, meaning a chest. The Yiddish word denoted a portable chest and was adapted by English speakers to mean anything used as a travelling container, including a hawker’s display cabinet, a satchel and a trouser pocket. The transition from these senses to a part of the human body is not completely clear; it has been suggested that it became an underworld synonym for the anus as used to smuggle contraband across borders or into prison. The term is now rather old-fashioned but was used by Ronald Reagan in the late 1980s.