above-board

aboveboard

[uh-buhv-bawrd, -bohrd]
adverb, adjective
in open sight; without tricks, concealment, or disguise: Their actions are open and aboveboard.

Origin:
1610–20; above + board; so called from the requirement of keeping the hands above the table or board in order to discourage possible cheating at cards


honest, straightforward.


devious, underhanded, sneaky.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Word Origin & History

aboveboard
1610s, from above and board (1). "A figurative expression borrowed from gamesters, who, when they put their hands under the table, are changing their cards." [Johnson]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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