cut·​throat | \ ˈkət-ˌthrōt How to pronounce cutthroat (audio) \

Definition of cutthroat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

2 : a cruel unprincipled person



Definition of cutthroat (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : marked by unprincipled practices : ruthless cutthroat competition
3 : characterized by each player playing independently rather than having a permanent partner used especially of partnership games adapted for three players cutthroat bridge

Synonyms & Antonyms for cutthroat

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of cutthroat in a Sentence

Noun while traveling the ancient Silk Road, traders were constant prey to cutthroats and thieves Adjective cutthroat business practices intended to drive competitors out of business
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Logan Canyon • Temple Fork is a beloved hiking area by many Cache Valley locals, home to one of the few sites where Bonneville cutthroat continue to thrive. Leia Larsen, The Salt Lake Tribune, 12 May 2022 In this cutthroat, zero-sum game of high finance, people are used to being yelled and cursed at. Los Angeles Times, 19 Jan. 2022 Now early data and interviews across the industry suggest that many buyers have finally been exhausted by declining affordability and cutthroat competition, causing the gravity-defying pandemic housing market to start easing up. New York Times, 16 Apr. 2022 Along with downward trends in growth and profitability, retailers may also be struggling with mounting operations costs, hampered productivity and cutthroat pricing. Anita Raj, Forbes, 22 Oct. 2021 Now Pearl will get to face off against his former assistant annually in a cutthroat SEC that placed six teams in the NCAA Tournament this year while six others made coaching changes to try to keep pace in the league. Tom Green |, al, 19 Mar. 2022 Fishing for cutthroat in the Rio Hondo is up there, too. Graham Averill, Outside Online, 6 Jan. 2022 Any company that can find the financing to meet ambitious climate goals may also discover a competitive edge in a cutthroat shipping industry where carbon emissions are a key selling point. Nicolás Rivero, Quartz, 13 Jan. 2022 When Oklahoma suddenly decided to leave the comfortable Big 12 Conference for the cutthroat Southeastern Conference this past summer, Riley was reportedly not thrilled with the decision and began feeling increasingly disconnected to the program. Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times, 28 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The rom-com novelist's book focuses on cutthroat literary agent Nora Stephens, who goes on vacation to North Carolina. Mary Cadden, USA TODAY, 12 May 2022 The guys go first, and some are pretty cutthroat about getting their face in front of the tunnels and blocking other guys from seeing through it. Sydney Bucksbaum,, 12 May 2022 Disney once again beat Wall Street expectations last quarter in streaming, adding 7.9 million Disney+ subscribers, and suggesting that the company may be positioned to take a lead in what has become a cutthroat race to the top in streaming. Alex Weprin, The Hollywood Reporter, 11 May 2022 Our stories about environmental catastrophe used to be set in distant futures: the desolate endlessness of The Road, or the hopeless, cutthroat scrounging in the Parable of the Sower. Heather Hansman, The Atlantic, 10 May 2022 Disney is famously velvet glove, corporate, insular and cutthroat in its own ways. Cynthia Littleton, Variety, 28 Apr. 2022 Politics can be a very cutthroat business, so in my mind, that’s where some of her protective nature comes from. ELLE, 21 Apr. 2022 Most people think the business world is a brutal and cutthroat place, where everyone is pointing a gun at each other under the table. Sun Yi, Forbes, 14 Apr. 2022 High on the list of intimidations for first-time home buyers are stratospheric home prices and cutthroat bidding wars. Los Angeles Times, 29 Mar. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of cutthroat


1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1565, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for cutthroat

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The first known use of cutthroat was in 1535

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Dictionary Entries Near cutthroat

cut the Gordian knot


cutthroat contract

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Statistics for cutthroat

Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cutthroat.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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Nglish: Translation of cutthroat for Spanish Speakers


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