three-card monte


: a gambling game in which the dealer shows three cards, shuffles them, places them face down, and invites spectators to bet they can identify the location of a particular card

Examples of three-card monte in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Enter Email Sign Up Related: What Harry Sinden thinks of these record-setting Bruins, and other thoughts Entering weekend play, the Panthers, Islanders, and Penguins remained in a spirited game of three-card monte (no relation to the Bruins coach) to sort out the two wild-card spots in the East. Kevin Paul Dupont,, 8 Apr. 2023 With this certificate, the shell company – whose sole purpose is to hold and hide assets – becomes one of a series of Russian dolls, each fit snugly into the next, creating a type of three-card monte in which the taxing authorities can never find assets nor owners. Beverly Moran, The Conversation, 5 Oct. 2021 The game is three-card monte. Robert Pearl, Forbes, 1 Mar. 2021 Determining responsibility for hiring underage workers, like determining responsibility for anything else that affects low-wage workers, is a game of three-card monte. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 28 Feb. 2023 In the wide-open world of grifts and schemes, an overinflated basketball may not rank with identity theft, Facebook come-ons from a Nigerian prince or even a hurried game of three-card monte. Dan Barry, New York Times, 18 Feb. 2023 Lincoln supports them with a gig as an Abraham Lincoln impersonator, and Booth spends his days shoplifting, aggressively trying to woo an ex and planning his debut as a master of three-card monte. Maya Phillips, New York Times, 14 Jan. 2023 His hands move quickly, rearranging the clips as deftly as a three-card monte dealer manipulates his cards. Steve Nadis, Discover Magazine, 10 Feb. 2020 Yahya Abdul-Mateen II opens the show as Booth, a man teaching himself the three-card monte hustle. Elisabeth Vincentelli, New York Times, 5 Dec. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'three-card monte.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1854, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of three-card monte was in 1854

Dictionary Entries Near three-card monte

Cite this Entry

“Three-card monte.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Dec. 2023.

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