trick


trick
trick n 1 Trick, ruse, stratagem, maneuver, gambit, ploy, artifice, wile, feint are comparable when they mean an act or an expedient whereby one seeks to gain one's ends by indirection and ingenuity and often by cunning.
Trick implies cheating or deceiving and often evil intention
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tricks and devices to conceal evasions and violations of ethical principles— Wagner)}

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she could not be entirely sure that ... he was not after all merely using a trick to get rid of her— Bennett

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The word may, however, imply nothing more than roguishness or playfulness and be used to designate an antic, a prank, a practical joke, or a harmless hoax
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the brothers were fond of playing tricks on their sisters

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the tricks of the clowns in a circus

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It may also be applied to a dexterous device or contrivance that pleases, persuades, deludes, or evokes surprise or wonder
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an auctioneer who knows all the tricks of his trade

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illusion in the theater is often accomplished by tricks of lighting

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that idle trick of making words jingle which men of Nuflo's class in my country so greatly admire— Hudson

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Ruse implies an attempt to give a false impression (as by diverting others' attention from one's real purposes or by making what is untrue seem true)
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her "falling" through the glass skylight . . . must be construed by him as a form of reckless intrepidity, the hardened ruse of a dyed-in-the-wool newspaper woman— Purdy

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a favorite ruse of the opium smugglers was to insert a hypodermic needle into an egg, withdraw carefully all the albumen and then refill the cavity with opium— Heiser

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Stratagem, though commonly applied to a ruse by which an advantage is gained over an enemy (as by outwitting or surprising him), is not restricted to military operations; in extended use it usually implies a clear objective such as entrapping or circumventing and a more or less elaborate plan for achieving one's end
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on our guard against the stratagems of evil rhetoric— R. M. Weaver

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some women . . . are driven to every possible trick and stratagem to entrap some man into marriage— Shaw

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Maneuver usually suggests tactics or handling and moving of troops or ships for the accomplishment of definite ends. In extended use it commonly implies adroit or dexterous manipulation of persons or things
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the Longbourn party were the last of all the company to depart, and, by a maneuver of Mrs. Bennet, had to wait for their carriage a quarter of an hour after everybody else was gone— Austen

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It may, however, be applied to a single strategic move comparable to one in a game of chess
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unless indeed, all her talk of flight had been a blind, and her de-parture no more than a maneuverWharton

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Gambit in chess denotes an opening that risks a pawn or minor piece to gain an advantage in position; in extended use it can apply to a device that is intended or serves to launch a conversation
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opened, safely as I thought, with the gambit of inquiring whether present conditions were satisfactory— Jeremy Potter

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he could not, if he had pondered conversational gambits for an hour, have hit on a more successful one—Day Lewis

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always carried turtle eggs in his pockets and bounced them on bars as a conversational gambitBergen Evans

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Perhaps more often the advantage-gaining aspect of the basic meaning of gambit is stressed, and the term is applied to a trick or tactic designed to gain its user a competitive advantage often by harassing or embarrassing an opponent
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from the Russian point of view it is no mere diplomatic gambit to keep Germany weak and disunited: it is a doctrine of self-preservation— Harold Nicolson

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if a stranger just ahead drops a rosary, don't take any notice. That's the opening gambit of the oldest trick in the world— Aldor

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to avoid the multitude of taxes and assessments, the standard gambit of the peasant was to "dress poor" and "talk poor"— Idzerda

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nobody could be sure whether his anti-market talk was real, or simply a Gaullist gambit designed to enhance the French bargaining position— Scheingold

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Ploy carries a suggestion of finesse and often of roguishness and can come very close to the lastmentioned value of gambit
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this summer's ploy in the game of oneupmanship, is to holiday in Europe without doing the great museums. . . . little out-of-the-way museums and provincial churches are admissible. But to score special points one must visit really distinguished collections in private houses— Genauer

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perhaps the most common ploy of stockholders at annual meetings is imparting ideas on how the business should be run— Wall Street Jour.

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or it can be used of an individual maneuver in the development of a gambit
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subplays or individual maneuvers of a gambit are usually referred to as ploysStephen Potter

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However in their common conjoined use gambit and ploy are seldom distinguishable
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demonstrates his Gamesmanship technique for inducing embarrassment and discomfort, and offers ploys and gambits for use against such rivals as fishing companions, wine experts, and fellow club members— New Yorker

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among the ploys and gambits the President may have used in the process were the White House breakfast . . . the fireside chat... the press conference ... the dangled patronage— Rossiter

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Artifice suggests the employment of devices or contrivances; it usually connotes ingenuity, but it need not connote an intent to deceive or overreach
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the artifices by which friends endeavor to spare one another's feelings— Shaw

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he was witnessing a remarkable performance? Not a show of artifice . . . but a genuine creative effort— Hervey

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Wile usually suggests an attempt to entrap or ensnare by allurements or by false and deceptive appearances; it may connote slyness and imposture, but it often suggests coquetry or an attempt to charm
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the Devil was helping him and made him sly and foxier than the fox with all the wiles, and the cunning, and the craftiness— Farrell

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he was no longer a mild old man to be worked on by the wiles of engaging youth, but a stern-spoken person in high authority— Archibald Marshall

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Feint basically applies to a thrust (as of a rapier or a fist) seemingly directed at one part of an opponent's body but actually designed to divert his attention and his guards away from the part at which it is really aimed. In extended use the term commonly implies the employment of a stratagem or maneuver which distracts attention from one's actual intention until it is accomplished
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I love to think the leaving us was just a feintBrowning

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smiled a little embarrassedly at his colleague who, whether in feint or truth, was too occupied to take a partTerry Southern

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believed the dropping of parachutists was merely an Allied feint to cover their main landings— Shirer

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Analogous words: *imposture, deceit, deception, counterfeit, humbug, fake, cheat, fraud: *fun, jest, sport, game, play
2 turn, tour, shift, *spell, stint, bout, go
trick vb gull, befool, hoax, *dupe, hoodwink, bamboozle
Analogous words: *deceive, delude, beguile, mislead: outwit, circumvent (see FRUSTRATE): cajole, wheedle, blandish, *coax

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • trick — trick …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • trick — ou tric [ trik ] n. m. • 1773; angl. trick « ruse, stratagème », du norm. trikier (→ tricher) ♦ Jeu Au whist, au bridge, La septième levée, qui est la première (après le « devoir ») à compter un point. ⊗ HOM. Trique. ● trick nom masculin (mot… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • trick — [trik] n. [ME trik < NormFr trique < trikier < OFr trichier, to trick, cheat, prob. < VL * triccare, altered < ? LL tricare, to deceive, for L tricari, to make trouble < tricae, vexations, tricks < IE * treik < base * ter …   English World dictionary

  • Trick 77 — Trick 17 wird im Sprachgebrauch als Beschreibung eines Lösungweges bei Problemen verwandt. Einerseits werden damit Lösungwege bezeichnet, die originell oder ungewöhnlich sind. Eine solche Lösung kann jedoch nur bei Erfolg Trick 17 genannt werden …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Trick — Trick, n. [D. trek a pull, or drawing, a trick, trekken to draw; akin to LG. trekken, MHG. trecken, trechen, Dan. tr[ae]kke, and OFries. trekka. Cf. {Track}, {Trachery}, {Trig}, a., {Trigger}.] 1. An artifice or stratagem; a cunning contrivance;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Trick 17 — wird im Sprachgebrauch als Beschreibung eines Lösungsweges bei Problemen verwendet. Einerseits werden damit Lösungswege bezeichnet, die originell oder ungewöhnlich sind. Eine solche Lösung kann jedoch nur bei Erfolg Trick 17 genannt werden, da… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • trick — ► NOUN 1) a cunning or skilful act or scheme intended to deceive or outwit someone. 2) a skilful act performed for entertainment. 3) an illusion: a trick of the light. 4) (before another noun ) intended to mystify or trick: a trick question. 5) a …   English terms dictionary

  • Trick — may refer to: * Trick (film), a 1999 American movie * Trick (TV series), a Japanese TV/movie series * Trick, an illusion or act of misdirection, especially a magic trick * Confidence trick, an attempt to intentionally mislead a person or persons… …   Wikipedia

  • Trick — ist: aus dem Englischen für Kunststück, Streich von franz. trique = Betrug, Kniff ein pfiffiges Kunststück, z. B. beim Zaubern, siehe Zaubertrick oder Kartentrick ein einzelnes Kunststück eines Artisten, siehe Trick (Zirkus) die englische… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • trick — [n1] deceit ambush, artifice, blind, bluff, casuistry, cheat, chicanery, circumvention, con*, concealment, conspiracy, conundrum, cover, deception, decoy, delusion, device, disguise, distortion, dodge*, double dealing, duplicity, equivocation,… …   New thesaurus


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