ca·​hoot | \ kə-ˈhüt How to pronounce cahoot (audio) \

Definition of cahoot

: partnership, league usually used in pluralthey're in cahootsHe was robbed by a man who was in cahoots with the bartender.

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Did You Know?

Cahoot is used almost exclusively in the phrase "in cahoots," which means "in an alliance or partnership." In most contexts, it describes the conspiring activity of people up to no good. (There's also the rare idiom go cahoots, meaning "to enter into a partnership," as in "they went cahoots on a new restaurant.") "Cahoot" may derive from French cahute, meaning "cabin" or "hut," suggesting the notion of two or more people hidden away working together in secret. "Cahute" is believed to have been formed through the combination of two other words for cabins and huts, "cabane" and "hutte."

Examples of cahoot in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In contrast, Nora and her foul-mouthed grandma are often in cahoots. Inkoo Kang, The Hollywood Reporter, "Critic's Notebook: 'Awkwafina Is Nora From Queens' and the Freshness of Angst-Free Asian Americans," 26 Feb. 2020 Caleb is in cahoots with characters played by Lena Waithe and Marshawn Lynch (why not), and apparently will team up with Dolores in some form or another based on the trailer. Jeva Lange, TheWeek, "15 questions for Westworld Season 3," 13 Mar. 2020 Future Forward has even been accused of being in cahoots with the Illuminati, the 18th-century secret order that has featured in the world-domination fantasies of Hollywood screenwriters and conspiracy theorists. Hannah Beech, New York Times, "Thailand Court Disbands Popular Opposition Party," 21 Feb. 2020 Referees were irked by Anastasiades’ remarks during the event that some referees are in cahoots with corrupt individuals within the sport that lead international soccer bodies to point the finger at Cyprus over suspected match-fixing. Washington Post, "Cyprus FA suspends all matches after ref walkout over attack," 17 Jan. 2020 Particularly since the police were allegedly in cahoots with the rampaging mob. Niharika Sharma, Quartz India, "“Shoot the traitors”: Bone-chilling scenes as mob ravages top Indian university under cops’ nose," 5 Jan. 2020 In the mix, there's the conniving soon-to-be stepmom and the in-cahoots household help. Joyce Bautista Ferrari, Marie Claire, "The Best Family Movies for Grown-Ups and Kids Alike," 11 Dec. 2019 Sometimes parents are in cahoots, receiving a kickback for signing false attendance records. Ryan Faircloth, Twin Cities, "MN DHS revamps troubled office that investigates child care fraud. ‘Extremely impressed,’ one critic says.," 27 Oct. 2019 And Chris Cox, its top lobbyist who is widely viewed as a successor to LaPierre, resigned after being accused of being in cahoots with North in a failed attempt to oust LaPierre as CEO. Washington Post, "NRA tax filing: Embattled CEO earned about $2 mil last year," 16 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cahoot.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cahoot

1827, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cahoot

perhaps from French cahute cabin, hut

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The first known use of cahoot was in 1827

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Cite this Entry

“Cahoot.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for cahoot


ca·​hoot | \ kə-ˈhüt How to pronounce cahoot (audio) \

Kids Definition of cahoot

: a secret partnership usually used in pl.They were in cahoots with the thieves.

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