trade·​craft | \ ˈtrād-ˌkraft How to pronounce tradecraft (audio) \

Definition of tradecraft

: the techniques and procedures of espionage

Examples of tradecraft in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The senators called agencies’ judgments well supported and their tradecraft strong. New York Times, "In a Fox-Inspired Tweetstorm, Trump Offers a Medley of Falsehoods and Misstatements," 3 July 2018 So did her study of Russian tradecraft, said former CIA officers who know her. Shane Harris, Washington Post, "Undercover to under scrutiny: Gina Haspel, nominee to head CIA, to face Senate grilling," 7 May 2018 One strong possibility is that Mr. Cuomo, who is running for a third term, tactically held his tongue in an act of political tradecraft. New York Times, "Cuomo Finally Says the Obvious: He Backs the Transit Rescue Plan," 31 May 2018 Still other former intelligence officials have also argued that the spy network might have been crippled by a combination of both, as well as sloppy tradecraft by agency officers in China. Adam Goldman, New York Times, "Ex-C.I.A. Officer Suspected of Compromising Chinese Informants Is Arrested," 16 Jan. 2018 John le Carré could not have done better justice to all the details of spy tradecraft (brush-contacts, secret recognition signals, counter-surveillance tactics) that went into the daring operation. Stephen Budiansky, WSJ, "‘The Spy and the Traitor’ Review: Inside the Mind of a Double Agent," 13 Sep. 2018 The honey trap, as the professionals euphemistically call a liaison in the bedroom, is once again part of the tradecraft taught to new agents. Ash Carter, Town & Country, "A New Book Reveals How the "Blonde Bond" Helped the Allies Win World War II," 14 Apr. 2016 Many of the tradecraft techniques are so old, they were used in Biblical times. Katie Kilkenny, The Hollywood Reporter, "How 'Red Sparrow' Author Made the Film More "Authentically CIA"," 1 Mar. 2018 As an informant, Halper openly asked questions; a spy uses tradecraft to obtain information. Glenn Kessler,, "Trump's 'spygate' claim is latest off-target salvo at Russia probe," 2 June 2018

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

1961, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for tradecraft

Last Updated

24 May 2019

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Time Traveler for tradecraft

The first known use of tradecraft was in 1961

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tradecraft

Comments on tradecraft

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to mark by some ceremony or observation

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