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trick•er•y(ˈtrɪk ə ri)
n., pl. -er•ies.
hocus-pocus See MAGIC.
pull a fast one To trick by doing or saying something clever and unexpected; to gain the upper hand by a sudden show of skill; to swindle or defraud. Perhaps this originally U.S. slang expression first applied to a deft movement, such as in a game of football or some other sport, which caused control of the ball to change hands.
Brick pulled a fast one in the St. Mary’s game. (J. Sayre, Rackety Rax, 1932)
However, this expression and the analogous put one over on or put over a fast one now apply to any remark or action which gives a person unfair advantage.
The thought that a girl capable of thinking up a fast one like that should be madly throwing herself away on Blair Eggleston … was infinitely saddening. (P. G. Wodehouse, Hot Water, 1932)
pull [someone’s] leg To harmlessly mislead a person; to bamboozle or trick in a jocular manner; to tease or kid. This expression may have derived from the “trippers-up,”a former group of English criminals who tripped and subsequently robbed their victims. The expression’s current reference is to a scheme in which the victim is purposely but humorously hoodwinked.
I suspected that he was pulling my leg, but a glance at him convinced me otherwise. (F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, 1925)
pull the wool over [someone’s] eyes To deceive or delude, to hoodwink or bamboozle.
He said his only purpose was to “cite substantial evidence that will show just who is trying to pull the wool over the eyes of the American people.” (St Paul Pioneer Press, June, 1949)
Attempts to account for the use of wool in this expression are unconvincing. This popular Americanism dates from the 19th century.
rope in To draw into some scheme or enterprise by deception; to take in, to ensnare or hook. This expression had its origins in the American West when roundups were commonplace and cowboys spent their time roping or lassoing cattle in order to brand them.
He will probably rope the victim into his favorite charity, the Margaret MacMillan Memorial Fund. (Time, February, 1950)
skulduggery See CRIMINALITY.
take for a ride See DEATH.
thimblerig To cleverly manipulate data in order to deceive or confuse; to pull a fast one; to cheat or swindle. Thimblerigging was a swindling game popular in the 19th century at race courses and fairs. The game involved three thimbles, one of which had a pea hidden under it. The victim of this swindle would bet on which thimble was hiding the pea. Reference to the trick appeared in print by the early 1800s. Soon after, the term was used figuratively for any deceitful or underhanded manipulation.
Don’t let us have any juggling and thimblerigging with virtue and vice. (Willliam Makepeace Thackeray, Catherine, 1839)
throw dust in [someone’s] eyes To mislead or deceive, to dupe; to confuse or bewilder, to prevent someone from seeing the reality of a situation; to throw someone off guard, to render someone temporarily unfit to act. The most popular explanation for this expression is that it derives from the Muhammadan practice of casting dust into the air to confound religious enemies. Apparently Muhammad used this common military expedient on a number of occasions. The following quotation from the Koran alludes to the practice.
Neither didst thou, O Mahomet, cast dust into their eyes, but it was God who confounded them.
The figurative use of throw dust in [someone’s] eyes appeared in print as early as the 1600s.
|Noun||1.||trickery - verbal misrepresentation intended to take advantage of you in some way|
|2.||trickery - the use of tricks to deceive someone (usually to extract money from them)|
dupery, hoax, put-on, humbug, fraud, fraudulence - something intended to deceive; deliberate trickery intended to gain an advantage
jugglery - artful trickery designed to achieve an end; "the senator's tax program was mere jugglery"
honesty, openness, candour, frankness, directness, straightforwardness, artlessness, uprightness