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a. A military attack or maneuver that is meant to divert attention away from a planned point of attack.
b. A body movement that is intended to divert another's attention, often by being deliberately left uncompleted: "The mongoose begins with a feint, which provokes the snake to strike" (Norbert Wiener).
2. A deceptive action calculated to divert attention from one's real purpose. See Synonyms at wile.
v. feint·ed, feint·ing, feints
To make a feint: "He feinted with his left hand, trying to distract the turtle and then grab its tail" (Howard Frank Mosher).
1. To deceive with a feint: He feinted his opponent with a left hook.
2. To do or perform as a feint: feinted a punch.

[French feinte, from Old French, from past participle of feindre, to feign; see feign.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(feɪnts) or


pl n
(Brewing) the leavings of the second distillation of Scotch malt whisky
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in classic literature ?
At last D'Artagnan thought it was time to try one of his favorite feints in fencing.
For he never means to swallow a single limb; he only thinks to terrify by feints. But sometimes he is like the old juggling fellow, formerly a patient of mine in Ceylon, that making believe swallow jack-knives, once upon a time let one drop into him in good earnest, and there it stayed for a twelvemonth or more; when I gave him an emetic, and he heaved it up in small tacks, d'ye see.
Seeing that I meant to dodge, he also paused; and a moment or two passed in feints on his part and corresponding movements upon mine.
The battling beasts made a few feints and passes at each other before the larger succeeded in fastening his fangs in the other's throat, and then, as a cat shakes a mouse, the larger lion shook the lesser, and when his dying foe sought to roll beneath and rake his conqueror with his hind claws, the other met him halfway at his own game, and as the great talons buried themselves in the lower part of the other's chest and then were raked downward with all the terrific strength of the mighty hind legs, the battle was ended.
For this fell purpose he had backed the astounded De Vac twice around the hall when, with a clever feint, and backward step, the master of fence drew the King into the position he wanted him, and with the suddenness of lightning, a little twist of his foil sent Henry's weapon clanging across the floor of the armory.
I feint for 'm, draw his left, duck to the right past it, takin' it across my shoulder, an come up with my right to his jaw.
"That the attack made by you was nothing but a feint; is not that true, monsieur?
Ponta paused, as if to make doubly sure, then feinted with his left and struck fiercely with his right with all his strength.
May not even this be a feint that will increase your triumph by affording a wider scope for your revenge?"
The young man reclined against a table at no great distance from his friend, in apparent indifference to everything that had passed; and I--who felt the difficulty of any interference, notwithstanding that the old man had appealed to me, both by words and looks--made the best feint I could of being occupied in examining some of the goods that were disposed for sale, and paying very little attention to a person before me.
He feinted, and while he was feinting Tom was on him.
I acted in the capacity of backer, or best-man, to the bridegroom; while a little limp pew opener in a soft bonnet like a baby's, made a feint of being the bosom friend of Miss Skiffins.