gold brick

goldbrick

[gohld-brik for 1, 2; gohld-brik for 3–5]
noun
1.
Informal. a brick made to look like gold, sold by a swindler.
2.
Informal. anything supposed to be valuable but which turns out to be worthless.
3.
Also, goldbricker. Slang. a person, especially a soldier, who shirks responsibility or performs duties without proper effort or care.
verb (used without object) Slang.
4.
to shirk responsibility or perform halfheartedly; loaf.
verb (used with object)
5.
to swindle; cheat.

Origin:
1850–55, Americanism; gold + brick

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
gold brick
 
n
1.  something with only a superficial appearance of value
2.  slang (US) an idler or shirker

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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