\ ˈgrift How to pronounce grift (audio) \
grifted; grifting; grifts

Definition of grift

transitive verb

: to obtain (money or property) illicitly (as in a confidence game)

intransitive verb

: to acquire money or property illicitly

Other Words from grift

grift noun
grifter noun

Did you know?

A grifter might be a pickpocket, a crooked gambler, scammer, or a confidence man. Grift may have come from graft, a slightly older word meaning "to acquire dishonestly."

Examples of grift in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Known for: passionate defense of global women; using White House position to grift for fashion brand until shuttering it in 2018 after slumping sales. Michael Tomasky, The New Republic, 27 Oct. 2021 Anna Sorokin, who posed as a German heiress named Anna Delvey to grift her way into a luxurious Manhattan lifestyle, has been released from prison this week after years of backlash for her famous SoHo scam. Erin Corbett,, 14 Feb. 2021 The coronavirus era has plainly shown how unprepared nursing homes were to deal with such a huge crisis, but equally how many of them are eager to grift and skim, even in the direst times. Libby Watson, The New Republic, 26 May 2020 From fancy little pens to fancy little snacks, report after report has emerged of Pruitt using his position and his influence to grift the hell out of taxpayers. Gabriella Paiella, The Cut, 3 July 2018 If nothing else, McFarland’s utter commitment to grifting at just 26 years old is impressive. Jasmine Sanders, The Cut, 13 June 2018 But after using hundreds of fake online identities to grift the online retail giant, the husband and wife team face up to 20 years behind bars for fraud and money laundering. Grace Donnelly, Fortune, 2 Oct. 2017 Not to alarm you, fellow Chicagoans, but someone is trying to grift our fair city: Heinz, that ubiquitous purveyor of ketchup, is trying to sneak the red stuff on your hot dogs. Joseph Hernandez,, 18 July 2017 And that’s just in the opening scene — a splashy tableau of gleeful street grifting that’s staged with plenty of midcentury-Manhattan grit and wit in the Old Globe’s crackling new revival of the musical favorite. James Hebert,, 8 July 2017 See More

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

First Known Use of grift

1902, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for grift

grift, noun, perhaps alteration of graft

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Cite this Entry

“Grift.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Aug. 2022.

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