counterfeit

adjective
coun·​ter·​feit | \ ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌfit How to pronounce counterfeit (audio) \

Definition of counterfeit

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : made in imitation of something else with intent to deceive : forged counterfeit money a counterfeit diamond
2a : insincere, feigned counterfeit sympathy counterfeit joy at her friend's engagement
b : imitation counterfeit Georgian houses

counterfeit

verb
counterfeited; counterfeiting; counterfeits

Definition of counterfeit (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to imitate or feign especially with intent to deceive also : to make a fraudulent replica of counterfeiting $20 bills

intransitive verb

1 : to try to deceive by pretense or dissembling
2 : to engage in counterfeiting something of value

counterfeit

noun

Definition of counterfeit (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : something counterfeit : forgery The $20 bill turned out to be a counterfeit.
2 : something likely to be mistaken for something of higher value Pity was a counterfeit of love …— Harry Hervey

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Other Words from counterfeit

Verb

counterfeiter noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for counterfeit

Synonyms: Adjective

bogus, fake, false, forged, inauthentic, phony (also phoney), queer, sham, snide, spurious, unauthentic

Synonyms: Verb

fake, forge, phony

Synonyms: Noun

fake, forgery, hoax, humbug, phony (also phoney), sham

Antonyms: Adjective

authentic, bona fide, genuine, real, unfaked

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Choose the Right Synonym for counterfeit

Verb

assume, affect, pretend, simulate, feign, counterfeit, sham mean to put on a false or deceptive appearance. assume often implies a justifiable motive rather than an intent to deceive. assumed an air of cheerfulness around the patients affect implies making a false show of possessing, using, or feeling. affected an interest in art pretend implies an overt and sustained false appearance. pretended that nothing had happened simulate suggests a close imitation of the appearance of something. cosmetics that simulate a suntan feign implies more artful invention than pretend, less specific mimicry than simulate. feigned sickness counterfeit implies achieving the highest degree of verisimilitude of any of these words. an actor counterfeiting drunkenness sham implies an obvious falseness that fools only the gullible. shammed a most unconvincing limp

Noun

imposture, fraud, sham, fake, humbug, counterfeit mean a thing made to seem other than it is. imposture applies to any situation in which a spurious object or performance is passed off as genuine. their claim of environmental concern is an imposture fraud usually implies a deliberate perversion of the truth. the diary was exposed as a fraud sham applies to fraudulent imitation of a real thing or action. condemned the election as a sham fake implies an imitation of or substitution for the genuine but does not necessarily imply dishonesty. these jewels are fakes; the real ones are in the vault humbug suggests elaborate pretense usually so flagrant as to be transparent. creating publicity by foisting humbugs on a gullible public counterfeit applies especially to the close imitation of something valuable. 20-dollar bills that were counterfeits

Examples of counterfeit in a Sentence

Adjective

The concert ticket is counterfeit. counterfeit currency that had been passed all over town

Verb

They were counterfeiting money in his garage. an expert at counterfeiting money

Noun

the will as well as the other documents turned out to be counterfeits
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

And finally, a search of a location on Rosewood Street in Oak Park turned up counterfeit money, two handguns, and several fraudulent Arizona driver's licenses. Ann Zaniewski, Detroit Free Press, "Authorities seize more than 13 kilos of cocaine at Detroit Metro Airport," 10 July 2019 At the center of Martin’s case are counterfeit pills that often resemble prescription oxycodone but instead contain fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that can turn fatal even in small doses. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Drug rehab counselor charged with murder in Navy man’s fentanyl overdose death," 22 June 2019 One of the challenges of fentanyl is that dealers mix it with heroin, cocaine and other drugs, and criminal suppliers manufacture counterfeit pain pills that contain fentanyl. Steve Hamm, courant.com, "Fentanyl crisis prompt calls for more aggressive treatment and prevention of opioid abuse," 28 June 2019 Investigators found counterfeit money in a vehicle owned by Lux. Kieran Nicholson, The Denver Post, "Man sentenced to prison for counterfeit cash passed at Colorado stores," 26 June 2019 Chen is charged with smuggling, trafficking in counterfeit goods, and conspiracy, for allegedly importing and selling small electronic devices that bore fake company marks. Ethan Baron, The Mercury News, "Feds hunt alleged East Bay counterfeiter of Apple, H-P tech after trial no-show, flight to China," 26 June 2019 The counterfeit money seized included fake $1, $5, $10 and $20 bills, Presley said. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, "More than $2,000 in counterfeit cash found during arrest near Westport Village," 7 June 2019 Originally arrested for handling counterfeit money, Hickey, a member of Washington’s personal escort, was overheard bragging about his involvement in a plan to enlist men for the crown and wreck Patriot defenses. Stephen Brumwell, WSJ, "‘The First Conspiracy’ Review: The Skulduggery of King George," 9 Jan. 2019 Despite operating a successful practice for years, his real estate investments in a failing economy led to his involvement in a counterfeit money scheme 1983. Ron Higgins, NOLA.com, "Billy Cannon, LSU's only Heisman Trophy winner, dies at age 80," 20 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The company has been accused of counterfeiting the Supreme brand founded in New York. Khadeeja Safdar, WSJ, "How Supreme Got Pulled Into a Fight for Its Billion-Dollar Brand," 28 June 2019 Not only does fake traffic defraud advertisers, but ads that are served to counterfeit sites rather than legitimate ones deprive publishers and other sites of ad revenue. Suzanne Vranica, WSJ, "U.S. Charges Eight With Online-Ad Fraud," 27 Nov. 2018 Such violations, from counterfeiting famous brands and stealing trade secrets to pressuring companies to share technology with Chinese companies to gain access to China’s vast market, have long angered China’s overseas competitors. Bloomberg.com, "What’s Intellectual Property and Does China Steal It?," 22 Mar. 2018 It is known in the West for counterfeiting money, human rights horrors, cyberattacks and crazy-sounding threats. Bob Drogin, latimes.com, "Here's what you need to know about the Trump-Kim summit in Singapore," 10 June 2018 Eight states—Alaska, Arizona, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Texas—have their own laws governing the sale of fake and counterfeited Native American objects. Daniel Grant, WSJ, "What You Need to Know About Buying Native-American Art," 8 June 2018 AP Burberry is firing legal charges at Target for allegedly counterfeiting its iconic check plaid pattern and confusing consumers in a multi-million dollar fashion knockoff sales campaign. Kevin Mccoy, USA TODAY, "Burberry lawsuit accuses Target of copying its iconic check plaid pattern," 11 May 2018 Why does counterfeit money represent a threat to the nation? Dave Barry, miamiherald, "Classic '98: Funny money," 3 June 2018 So Wun Pak appeared in Johnson County District Court Thursday and pleaded no contest to the felony charge of counterfeiting merchandise worth from $1,000 to $25,000. Tony Rizzo, kansascity, "Prada, Kate Spade goods in Mission store were fake; owner convicted," 31 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Amazon has repeatedly been criticized for selling counterfeits and other unsafe items. Louise Matsakis, WIRED, "Why You Still Can’t Buy Fireworks on Amazon," 1 July 2019 Stephen Brashear/Getty Images Amazon has a counterfeit book problem. Kaitlyn Tiffany, Vox, "How Amazon benefits from counterfeit books," 24 June 2019 Fraud, Cedar Road At 2:15 p.m. June 7, the accounting department at Menorah Park, 27100 Cedar Road, received word from Huntington Bank that the bank had received a counterfeit check made payable to Menorah Park in the amount of $3,400. cleveland.com, "Man arrested for beating woman while in parked car: Beachwood Police Blotter," 11 June 2019 God Squad’ that prosecutors say recruited Grant High School students and others to deposit counterfeit checks in banks across Oregon and southwest Washington became the first of six charged to plead guilty Thursday. oregonlive.com, "First of alleged ‘God Squad’ defendants accused of recruiting high school students, others to deposit bogus checks pleads guilty," 13 June 2019 But its dominance has led brands such as Nike Inc. to agree to sell products directly on the site in exchange for stricter policing of counterfeits and restrictions on unsanctioned sales. Laura Stevens, WSJ, "Amazon Is Taking Over the World? Not in Europe," 30 Apr. 2018 Petzke’s job was to receive packages with the raw steroid powder and ship the counterfeit steroids off to customers, the statement said. Alana Levene, BostonGlobe.com, "Fitchburg woman, Saugus man sentenced for fake steroid scheme," 21 June 2018 The nerve agent used to poison the Skripals was smuggled to Britain in a counterfeit Nina Ricci perfume bottle and applied to the front door of their house, according to Metropolitan Police. Ryan Gaydos, Fox News, "Two Russians deny involvement in UK Novichok poisoning: 'We went there to see Stonehenge'," 13 Sep. 2018 Many academics argue the portrait of Alexander Hamilton, the star of our $10 bills, is a counterfeit. Mark Kennedy, The Seattle Times, "Historians irked by musical ‘Hamilton’ escalate their duel," 4 Feb. 2019

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for counterfeit

Adjective, Verb, and Noun

Middle English countrefet, from Anglo-French cuntrefeit, from past participle of cuntrefere, contrefaire to imitate, from cuntre- + faire to make, from Latin facere — more at do

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Statistics for counterfeit

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for counterfeit

The first known use of counterfeit was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for counterfeit

counterfeit

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of counterfeit

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: made to look like an exact copy of something in order to trick people

counterfeit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of counterfeit (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make an exact copy of (something) in order to trick people

counterfeit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of counterfeit (Entry 3 of 3)

: something that is made to look like an exact copy of something else in order to trick people

counterfeit

adjective
coun·​ter·​feit | \ ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌfit How to pronounce counterfeit (audio) \

Kids Definition of counterfeit

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : made in exact imitation of something genuine and meant to be taken as genuine counterfeit money
2 : not sincere counterfeit sympathy

counterfeit

verb
counterfeited; counterfeiting

Kids Definition of counterfeit (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to imitate or copy especially in order to deceive Modern money is difficult to counterfeit.
2 : pretend sense 2 She tried to counterfeit enthusiasm.

Other Words from counterfeit

counterfeiter noun

counterfeit

noun

Kids Definition of counterfeit (Entry 3 of 3)

: something made to imitate another thing with the desire to deceive The 100 dollar bill turned out to be a counterfeit.

counterfeit

adjective
coun·​ter·​feit | \ ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌfit How to pronounce counterfeit (audio) \

Legal Definition of counterfeit

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: made in imitation of a genuine article (as a document) without authorization and especially with intent to deceive or defraud

counterfeit

transitive verb

Legal Definition of counterfeit (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make an imitation of without authorization and especially with intent to deceive or defraud whoever falsely makes, alters, forges, or counterfeits any deedU.S. Code

Other Words from counterfeit

counterfeiter noun

counterfeit

noun

Legal Definition of counterfeit (Entry 3 of 3)

: something counterfeit all counterfeits of any coins or obligationsU.S. Code — compare forgery

History and Etymology for counterfeit

Adjective

Middle French contrefait, past participle of contrefaire to imitate, draw, paint, from contre- counter- + faire to make

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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