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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Gist \Gist\ (j[i^]st), n. [OF. giste abode, lodgings, F. g[^i]te, fr. g['e]sir to lie, L. jac[=e]re, prop., to be thrown, hence, to lie, fr. jac[e^]re to throw. In the second sense fr. OF. gist, F. g[^i]t, 3d pers. sing. ind. of g['e]sir to lie, used in a proverb, F., c'est l[`a] que g[^i]t le li[`e]vre, it is there that the hare lies, i. e., that is the point, the difficulty. See Jet a shooting forth, and cf. Agist, Joist, n., Gest a stage in traveling.] 1. A resting place. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] These quails have their set gists; to wit, ordinary resting and baiting places. --Holland. [1913 Webster] 2. The main point, as of a question; the point on which an action rests; the pith of a matter; as, the gist of a question. [1913 Webster]