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tr.v. be·trayed, be·tray·ing, be·trays
a. To give aid or information to an enemy of; commit treason against: betray one's country.
b. To inform upon or deliver into the hands of an enemy in violation of a trust or allegiance: "City investigators betrayed him to his bosses as a whistle-blower" (Selwyn Raab).
2. To be false or disloyal to: betrayed a cause; betray one's spouse.
3. To divulge in a breach of confidence: betray a secret.
4. To make known unintentionally: Her hollow laugh betrayed her contempt for the idea.
5. To lead astray; deceive: "She felt somewhat like a woman who in a moment of passion is betrayed into an act of infidelity" (Kate Chopin).

[Middle English bitraien : bi-, be- + traien, to betray (from Old French trair, from Latin trādere, to hand over; see tradition).]

be·tray′al n.
be·tray′er n.



fifth columnist A traitor, quisling; a subversive or an enemy sympathizer. This term’s origin dates from the Spanish Civil War (1936-39) when the Loyalist government in Madrid had been infiltrated by many Franco sympathizers. In a radio broadcast to the Loyalists, General Gonzalo Queipo de Llano y Sierro, a Fascist revolutionary, stated, “We have four columns on the battlefield against you, and a fifth column inside your ranks.”

Fifth Column is also the title of a play (1938) by Ernest Hemingway. During World War II, these expressions received widespread use, usually referring to revolutionary sympathizers who had secured positions of influence in matters of security and policy decision. These insurgents spread rumors and practised espionage and sabotage, exploiting the fears of the people and often inciting panic.

Parliament has given us the powers to put down the fifth column activities with a strong hand. (Winston Churchill, Into Battle, 1941)

Judas kiss A sign of betrayal, duplicity, or insincerity. The reference is to the kiss Judas Iscariot gave Jesus in betraying him to the authorities:

And he that betrayed him had given them a token, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he. (Mark 14:44)

The term dates from as early as 1400.

Candour shone from his eyes, as insincere as a Judas kiss. (R. Lewis, Blood Money, 1973)

the most unkindest cut of all See ADVERSITY.

rat To inform or squeal; to desert and turn renegade, to bolt and join the opposition. The noun rat has been an opprobrious epithet since Elizabethan times. During the 18th century it took on, in political slang, the more specific denotation of traitor or turncoat. By the 19th century the corresponding verb usage appeared. It is generally believed that these slang meanings came by way of comparison with the apostate rats of the proverbial sinking ship, though the older more general ‘scoundrel’ meaning would suffice—rodents having long been objects of aversion and loathing to man.

scab A worker who resists union membership; a union member who refuses to strike. This disparaging expression likens the blue collar maverick to a pus-filled lesion. The epithet is often applied to an employee who crosses picket lines or more specifically, to a person who takes over the job of a striker for the duration of the work halt.

sell down the river To abandon or desert; to turn one’s back on another; to delude or take advantage of. This expression originated in the Old South, where uncooperative slaves were often punished by being shipped downstream to the harsh, sweltering plantations of the lower Mississippi. The phrase maintains regular usage today.

I think we are, as a people, a little inclined to sell our state down the river in our thinking. (Daily Ardmoreite[Ardmore, Oklahoma], December, 1949)

stool pigeon or stoolie A person who acts as a decoy; an informer, particularly one associated with the police. This expression is derived from the former practice of fastening a pigeon to a stool to attract other pigeons. Today the phrase usually refers to an informer who is betraying his cohorts.

In New York City he is also called a Stool-pigeon. The “profession” generally speaks of him as a Squealer. (Willard Flynt, World of Graft, 1901)

turncoat One who abandons his convictions or affiliations; an apostate or renegade. This expression purportedly originated with a ploy of Emanuel, an early duke of Savoy, whose strategic territory was precariously situated between France and Italy. According to legend, in order to maintain peace with his powerful neighbors, Emanuel had a reversible coat made which was white on one side and blue on the other. He wore the white side when dealing with the French and the blue side when dealing with the Italians. The duke was subsequently called Emanuel Turncoat, and the epithet attained its now familiar meaning of renegade or tergiversator.

The Tory who voted for those motions would run a great risk of being pointed at as a turncoat by the … Cavaliers. (Thomas Macaulay, History of England, 1855)

ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.betrayal - an act of deliberate betrayalbetrayal - an act of deliberate betrayal  
knavery, dishonesty - lack of honesty; acts of lying or cheating or stealing
double cross, double-crossing - an act of betrayal; "he gave us the old double cross"; "I could no longer tolerate his impudent double-crossing"
sellout - an act of betrayal
2.betrayal - the quality of aiding an enemy
subversiveness, traitorousness, treason - disloyalty by virtue of subversive behavior


2. giving away, telling, revelation, disclosure, blurting out, divulgence She saw his newspaper piece as a betrayal of her confidence.
giving away keeping, guarding, preserving, safeguarding, keeping secret
"If I had to choose between betraying my country and betraying my friend, I hope I should have the guts to betray my country" [E.M. Forster Two Cheers for Democracy]


An act of betraying:
Slang: sellout.
خِيانَه، إفْشاءُ السِّر


[bɪˈtreɪəl] N
1. [of person, country] → traición f
a betrayal of trustun abuso de confianza
2. [of secret, plot] → revelación f
3. [of feelings, intentions] → descubrimiento m


[bɪˈtreɪəl] n [ally, country] → trahison f
betrayal of trust → abus m de confiance
a disgraceful betrayal of trust → un honteux abus de confiance
She forgave him for his betrayal of her trust
BUT Elle lui pardonna d'avoir trahi sa confiance.
an act of betrayal → un acte de trahison


n (= act)Verrat m (→ of +gen); (= instance)Verrat m (→ of an +dat); (of trust)Enttäuschung f; (of friends)Verrat m (→ of an +dat), → Untreue f(of gegenüber); (of ideals, principles)Verrat m (→ of +gen); the betrayal of Christder Verrat an Christus; a betrayal of trustein Vertrauensbruch m


[bɪˈtre/ɛ7əl] ntradimento


(biˈtrei) verb
1. to act disloyally or treacherously towards (especially a person who trusts one). He betrayed his own brother (to the enemy).
2. to give away (a secret etc). Never betray a confidence!
3. to show (signs of). Her pale face betrayed her fear.
beˈtrayal noun
beˈtrayer noun
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Relational health as a mediator between betrayal trauma and borderline personality disorder.
The next article is "How Betrayal Trauma Triggers Addiction and How It Can Be Healed" by Judi Vitale, a graduate student in the Wellness Graduate School's Master's degree program.
Betrayal trauma theory points to the unique symptoms (e.
Theories such as betrayal trauma theory (Freyd, 1996) assert that dissociation occurs as an adaptive reaction to trauma stemming from a meaningful relationship.
Emotion regulation difficulties mediate associations between betrayal trauma and symptoms of posttraumatic stress, depression, and anxiety.
In a study examining the potential effects of betrayal trauma and how these effects may differ by gender, Kaehler and Freyd (2011) identified gender differences between the level of betrayal trauma and the risk of developing BPD.
This has been called betrayal trauma in the literature; a social dimension of trauma that occurs "when the people or institutions on which a person depends for survival violate that person in a significant way" (Freyd, DePrince, & Gleaves, 2007, p.
Particularly among refugee women, we found participants who were experiencing what Smith and Freyd (2013) referred to as institutional betrayal trauma, or wrongdoing by an institution upon which an individual relies.
Abstract: In this paper, the issue of how betrayal trauma triggers addiction will be studied and addressed.
In this case, Fatima's core trauma combined with a variety of discriminations and bullying, such as placement in special education classes instead of English as a second language, represented a continuous, ongoing systemic betrayal trauma perpetrated by the school system.
Scholars have reported that individuals who have been exposed to a high level of betrayal trauma report lower levels of general and relational trust (Gobin & Freyd, 2013), compared to those who have not experienced betrayal trauma.
One particularly harmful betrayal trauma is institutional betrayal.