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confidence game

any swindle in which the swindler, after gaining the confidence of the victim, robs the victim by cheating at a gambling game, appropriating funds entrusted for investment, or the like.
Also called, British, confidence trick.
Origin of confidence game
1855-60, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for confidence-game
Historical Examples
  • The state attorney's office co-operates with us by enforcing the confidence-game statute.

    A Stake in the Land Peter Alexander Speek
Idioms and Phrases with confidence-game

confidence game

Also, confidence trick; con game. A swindle in which the victim is defrauded after his or her trust has been won. For example, The police warned of a confidence game in which people were asked to turn over valuables for a so-called appraisal, or The typical confidence trick is easy to spot if you know what to look for, or I almost let myself be taken in by her con game—she seemed so sincere. These terms, which use confidence in the sense of “trust,” date from the mid-1800s. They also gave rise to confidence man (or con man) for the swindler.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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