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[frawd] /frɔd/
deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage.
a particular instance of such deceit or trickery:
mail fraud; election frauds.
any deception, trickery, or humbug:
That diet book is a fraud and a waste of time.
a person who makes deceitful pretenses; sham; poseur.
Origin of fraud
1300-50; Middle English fraude < Old French < Medieval Latin fraud- (stem of fraus) deceit, injury
Related forms
fraudful, adjective
fraudfully, adverb
antifraud, adjective
prefraud, noun
1. See deceit. 3. wile, hoax. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for fraud
  • Surely if he's marketing his rubbish with false claims of medical efficacy he's committing fraud.
  • It depicts a flawed character who seems all the more brave and humane for his ambition and insecurity, virtue and fraud.
  • They manage it at every level-collecting premiums, writing claim checks, and guarding against fraud.
  • It is a sea term, and means the commission of a fraud on the owners or insurers of a ship by the captain or the crew.
  • fraud, deceit, or malice had not then meddled themselves with plainness and truth.
  • In particular, there was fraud and cozenage in the law, injustice and oppression.
  • For a hundred years that has been an almost unbroken record of fraud and peculation.
  • And their promises they perform faithfully without any fraud or deceit.
  • He's charged with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one count of bank fraud.
  • fraud, fakery, or larceny is what ordinary people would call it.
British Dictionary definitions for fraud


deliberate deception, trickery, or cheating intended to gain an advantage
an act or instance of such deception
something false or spurious: his explanation was a fraud
(informal) a person who acts in a false or deceitful way
Word Origin
C14: from Old French fraude, from Latin fraus deception
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for fraud

"criminal deception," early 14c., from Old French fraude "deception, fraud" (13c.), from Latin fraudem (nominative fraus) "deceit, injury." The noun meaning "impostor, humbug" is attested from 1850. Pious fraud "deception practiced for the sake of what is deemed a good purpose" is from 1560s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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