verb hood·wink \ ˈhu̇d-ˌwiŋk \
Updated on: 24 Dec 2017

Definition of hoodwink

transitive verb
1 archaic : blindfold
2 obsolete : hide
3 : to deceive by false appearance : dupe
  • people who allow themselves to be hoodwinked by such promises



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Examples of hoodwink in a Sentence

  1. Don't let yourself be hoodwinked into buying things you don't need.

  2. Tom Sawyer famously hoodwinked the other boys into thinking there was nothing more enjoyable than whitewashing a fence.

Recent Examples of hoodwink from the Web

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

Did You Know?

A now-obsolete sense of the word wink is "to close one's eyes," and "hoodwink" once meant to cover the eyes of someone, such as a prisoner, with a hood or blindfold. ("Hoodwink" was also once a name for the game of blindman's buff.) This 16th-century term soon came to be used figuratively for veiling the truth. "The Public is easily hood-winked," wrote the Irish physician Charles Lucas in 1756, by which time the figurative use had been around for almost a century and a half. Two hundred and fifty years later, this meaning of the word hasn't changed a wink: "The American public has been hoodwinked and fleeced," wrote Theodore Wolff, for example, in the Iowa State Daily on July 6, 2006.

Origin and Etymology of hoodwink

1hood + wink

hoodwink Synonyms




do a number on, lead one down the garden path (also lead one up the garden path), pull one's leg, pull the wool over one's eyes;

HOODWINK Defined for English Language Learners



Definition of hoodwink for English Language Learners

  • : to deceive or trick (someone)

HOODWINK Defined for Kids


verb hood·wink \ ˈhu̇d-ˌwiŋk \

Definition of hoodwink for Students

hoodwinked; hoodwinking
: to mislead by trickery
  • “I will personally be ensuring that no underage student hoodwinks our impartial judge …”
  • —J. K. Rowling, Goblet of Fire

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to blend or mix together

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