\ ˈtrik How to pronounce trick (audio) \

Definition of trick

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a crafty procedure or practice meant to deceive or defraud
b : a mischievous act : prank
c : a deceptive, dexterous, or ingenious feat especially : one designed to puzzle or amuse a juggler's tricks
d : an indiscreet or childish action
2a(1) : a quick or artful way of getting a result : knack the trick is to make it look natural
(2) : an instance of getting a desired result one small adjustment will do the trick
b : a technical device (as of an art or craft) the tricks of stage technique
3a : a delusive appearance especially when caused by art or legerdemain : an optical illusion a mere trick of the light
b : a habitual peculiarity of behavior or manner a horse with the trick of shying
c : a characteristic and identifying feature a trick of speech
4 : the cards played in one round of a card game often used as a scoring unit
5a : a sexual act performed by a prostitute turning tricks also : john sense 2
c : a trip taken as part of one's employment
d : a turn of duty at the helm usually lasting for two hours
6 : an attractive child or woman a cute little trick


tricked; tricking; tricks

Definition of trick (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to deceive by cunning or artifice : cheat
2 : to dress or adorn fancifully or ornately : ornament tricked out in a gaudy uniform



Definition of trick (Entry 3 of 3)

1a : of or relating to or involving tricks or trickery trick photography trick dice
b : skilled in or used for tricks a trick horse
2a : somewhat defective and unreliable a trick lock
b : inclined to give way unexpectedly a trick knee
3 : trig

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Choose the Right Synonym for trick


trick, ruse, stratagem, maneuver, artifice, wile, feint mean an indirect means to gain an end. trick may imply deception, roguishness, illusion, and either an evil or harmless end. the tricks of the trade ruse stresses an attempt to mislead by a false impression. the ruses of smugglers stratagem implies a ruse used to entrap, outwit, circumvent, or surprise an opponent or enemy. the stratagem-filled game maneuver suggests adroit and skillful avoidance of difficulty. last-minute maneuvers to avert bankruptcy artifice implies ingenious contrivance or invention. the clever artifices of the stage wile suggests an attempt to entrap or deceive with false allurements. used all of his wiles to ingratiate himself feint implies a diversion or distraction of attention away from one's real intent. a feint toward the enemy's left flank

Examples of trick in a Sentence

Noun It was a trick to persuade her to give him money. She enjoys playing tricks on her friends. For his last trick, the magician made a rabbit disappear. Verb He tricked her by wearing a disguise. you tricked me into thinking my ex wasn't coming to the party tonight Adjective a trick shot in pool He has a trick knee.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Because sometimes chips are the only thing that will do the trick! Jessica Jones, M.s., R.d.n., SELF, "18 Trader Joe’s Snacks You Really Need to Stock Your Home With," 30 July 2020 Simply reopening the economy will not do the trick, as millions of Americans are fully aware that a pandemic continues to rage and there is no going back to our pre-crisis routine. Andrew Yang For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, "Andrew Yang: What Congress can do to avoid a new Great Depression," 2 July 2020 Have children try this trick if clouds at two different levels are moving in different directions. Avery Hurt, National Geographic, "Why getting your kid’s head in the clouds is a good thing," 18 June 2020 The trick is to acknowledge and understand the dynamic. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "A Black man reveals what he's endured, teaching 2 white friends what can be done when we talk," 13 July 2020 Bush’s team considered that a dirty trick by Walsh intended to influence the election, and indeed the president was defeated days later. Peter Baker,, "In commuting Stone’s sentence, Trump goes where Nixon was not willing," 11 July 2020 Of course, once Dad and I pulled that trick once, there was no way to stop. Steve Gardner, USA TODAY, "Why do I love sports? 'Monday Night Football,' Howard Cosell and a father/son bond," 7 July 2020 The group points to a plan, backed by the city council and de Blasio, to take funds from the NYPD for school safety agents and transfer it to the Department of Education as an example of a budget trick. Nicole Goodkind, Fortune, "New York mayor says he will slash police budget by $1 billion, activists aren’t buying it," 29 June 2020 And, while one in five entries sticks to the classic Eurovision key change, none of the recent winners has employed that trick. Rob Picheta, CNN, "Want to win Eurovision? Write a nice, slow song about love," 29 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Their visible ancestry information reinforced the matches were impossible and suggested the fake profiles had been designed to trick the site’s search algorithm for some reason. Heather Murphy,, "Data breach at genealogy site has privacy experts worried," 1 Aug. 2020 In 2017, Snopes traced the posts back to an anti-gay misinformation campaign that started on 4chan in 2016, the hope of which was to trick the LGBTQ community into expressing support for pedophiles. Camille Caldera, USA TODAY, "Fact check: LGBTQ community rejects false association with pedophiles," 30 July 2020 At the heart of the case are two businessmen accused of conspiring with third-party payment processors and others to trick U.S. banks into approving credit-card payments for marijuana products. Patricia Kowsmann And Tom Fairless, WSJ, "Germany Probes Possible Money Laundering by Wirecard Executives," 9 July 2020 These viruses, called phages, are like strings of malicious computer code trying to hack into a bacterial genome to trick it into making more phages. Megan Molteni, Wired, "This Company Wants to Rewrite the Future of Genetic Disease," 7 July 2020 The goal is to trick the immune system into thinking the spike is actually the entire virus. Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, "Operation Warp Speed commits $1.6 billion to Covid-19 vaccine maker Novavax," 7 July 2020 In other cases, the words or phrases trick only the local wake word detection but not algorithms in the cloud. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Uncovered: 1,000 phrases that incorrectly trigger Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant," 1 July 2020 The goal is to trick you into entering your login credentials. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, "Disappearing cash scares consumers in COVID-19 era," 30 June 2020 At best, console makers are just buying time before someone finds a way to trick the system into acting like an arbitrary computer. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "New hack runs homebrew code from DVD-R on unmodified PlayStation 2," 29 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The ‘00s are cool again, right? (Trick question: They, like Britney, have always been cool.) Kara Nesvig, Allure, "The Top 10 Britney Spears Perfumes in Order of Greatness," 23 June 2017

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1500, in the meaning defined at sense 2


circa 1530, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for trick


Middle English trikke, from Anglo-French *trik, from trikier to deceive, cheat, from Vulgar Latin *triccare, alteration of Latin tricari to behave evasively, shuffle, from tricae complications, trifles

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Learn More about trick

Time Traveler for trick

Time Traveler

The first known use of trick was in the 15th century

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Statistics for trick

Last Updated

6 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Trick.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for trick


How to pronounce trick (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of trick

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: an action that is meant to deceive someone
: something done to surprise or confuse someone and to make other people laugh
: a clever and skillful action that someone performs to entertain or amuse people



English Language Learners Definition of trick (Entry 2 of 3)

: to deceive (someone)



English Language Learners Definition of trick (Entry 3 of 3)

: using methods that are meant to deceive someone
: done in a clever or entertaining way
US : weak and tending to fail suddenly


\ ˈtrik How to pronounce trick (audio) \

Kids Definition of trick

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : an action intended to deceive or cheat
2 : a mischievous act : prank
3 : an action designed to puzzle or amuse a card trick Mouse was trying to teach me a new yo-yo trick— Judy Blume, Sheila the Great
4 : a quick or clever way of doing something I know a trick for remembering names.
5 : the cards played in one round of a game


tricked; tricking

Kids Definition of trick (Entry 2 of 3)

: to deceive with tricks



Kids Definition of trick (Entry 3 of 3)

: relating to or involving actions intended to deceive or puzzle We scored a touchdown on a trick play.

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More from Merriam-Webster on trick

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trick

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with trick

Spanish Central: Translation of trick

Nglish: Translation of trick for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trick for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about trick

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