code word


Definition of code word

Examples of code word in a Sentence

The code word “conflict” has been used for what some people are calling a war.
Recent Examples on the Web Here, flexibility is a code word for cost-shifting. Joshua Cohen, Forbes, "Medicare Part D Plans Increasingly Place Generic Drugs On Non-Generic Tiers: Warped Incentives Hurt Medicare Patients," 5 May 2021 After following the rider’s pickup instructions, the CareDriver begins the multifactor verification by providing the rider with their first/last name and the secret code word. Matt Williams, Fortune, "Designing for trust: Business lessons from an underdog ride-share startup," 4 May 2021 In 1984, Louis Beam, a Texas leader of the Ku Klux Klan, created the Aryan Nation Liberty Net, an online message board open only to people who had a code word. Marc Fisher, Washington Post, "From memes to race war: How extremists use popular culture to lure recruits," 30 Apr. 2021 The code word, chosen by Pattelena, was ostrich, Matranga said., "Bedford, Mass., woman slain on York, Maine, beach died at her favorite place," 29 Mar. 2021 Long part of the zoning code in some communities, the term is often a code word for single-family homes that is used to discriminate against newcomers, supporters of the bill contend. Daniela Altimari,, "Connecticut legislators find sharply divided opinion as General Assembly takes up reform of local zoning and land use laws. Bills aim to address racial and economic segregation.," 15 Mar. 2021 Clay and his friends decided to create a code word right before season four started in order to get together. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Who is Gordon Lightfoot from "13 Reasons Why"?," 18 June 2020 IndyStar was told at the time that Anderson and Geathers had discussed using a code word to signal specific actions during the play. Dana Hunsinger Benbow, The Indianapolis Star, "The infamous Colts Catastrophe: 'It's amazing Luck didn't retire right then'," 18 Oct. 2020 Some opposed to her confirmation argue this is merely a code word in service of a right-wing political agenda, or that originalism will bring us back to the days when slavery was legal and women were denied the right to vote. Brian Hagedorn, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Opinion: Originalism, which Amy Coney Barrett espouses, simply means the words of the Constitution are the law.," 15 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'code word.' 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 code word

1884, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for code word

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The first known use of code word was in 1884

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Last Updated

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Code word.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for code word

code word


English Language Learners Definition of code word

: a word or phrase that has a secret meaning or that is used instead of another word or phrase to avoid speaking directly

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