shell game


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shell game

n.
1. A game, often a swindle involving gambling, in which a person hides a small object underneath one of three nutshells, thimbles, or cups, then shuffles them about on a flat surface while spectators try to guess the final location of the object. Also called thimblerig.
2. A fraud or deception perpetrated by shifting conspicuous things to hide something else.

shell game

n
(Gambling, except Cards) the US name for thimblerig

shell′ game`


n.
1. a swindling game in which a small object is supposedly hidden under one of three walnut shells or the like and bets are made.
2. any swindle or fraud.
[1885–90, Amer.]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.shell game - a swindling sleight-of-hand gameshell game - a swindling sleight-of-hand game; victim guesses which of three things a pellet is under
swindle, cheat, rig - the act of swindling by some fraudulent scheme; "that book is a fraud"
References in classic literature ?
It built magnificent racing parks all over the country, and by means of enormous purses it lured the people to come, and then it organized a gigantic shell game, whereby it plundered them of hundreds of millions of dollars every year.
This is an Ergen shell game designed to create a satellite TV monopoly injurious to the American consumer," said Riddle.
If the mayor and council truly cared about the real impact of their policies, this pathetic freeze would be just the first step in charting a new fiscally sound course for City Hall - one in which our leaders make wise and prudent choices for us, instead of playing a shell game.
Allocating the appropriation elsewhere is nothing more than a shell game designed to open abstinence-only clinics that have the Vatican seal of approval -- those without modern contraceptives such as condoms that are vital to combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic throughout Africa.
The Boeing Company's last offer to its striking engineers and technical workers was little more than a shell game, aimed at winning public sympathy and not bringing an end to the 19-day-old strike.
Now the shell game has been exposed and declared unconstitutional.
Newer agreements related to these benefits have been crafted by DIRECTV to allow them to play a shell game of 'now you see it, now you don't.
Usually, when you see Al Sharpton on television, you get the impression that just minutes before, he was fleecing the tourists, running a crooked shell game in the alley.
INDIANAPOLIS, July 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Amidst the great debate on what to do with a trillion dollar budget surplus, the leader of the nation's largest veterans organization characterized yesterday's action by the House Appropriations Subcommittee to provide only another $825 million for the VA budget as 'that old shell game.
Then the Data Shell Game forces them to hunt through a labyrinth built from zillions of bundles of bit-soup that all look alike, inside and out.
Electric rates are reported to be going up 37 percent, so the promise of savings due to lower prices caused by more gas sounds more like a shell game than a payback.