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[hahyst] /haɪst/ Slang.
a robbery or holdup:
Four men were involved in the armored car heist.
verb (used with object)
to take unlawfully, especially in a robbery or holdup; steal:
to heist a million dollars' worth of jewels.
to rob or hold up.
Origin of heist
1925-30, Americanism; alteration of hoist
Related forms
heister, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for heist
  • In the same way, economic inequality is not in question when an armed robber kills a bank guard in an attempted heist.
  • But doubts remain over whether the case is connected to the information heist.
  • He is currently working on a book about the world's largest unsolved art heist.
  • But his first organized heist leaves him so miserable that he drops out of the gang.
  • In the first, the swindler who runs the game arranges a heist of the participants.
  • The breakfast before the heist in reservoir dogs is another example.
British Dictionary definitions for heist


a robbery
(transitive) to steal or burgle
Derived Forms
heister, noun
Word Origin
variant of hoist
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 heist

1927 (in heister "shoplifter, thief"), American English slang, probably a dialectal alteration of hoist "lift," in sense of "shoplift," also in older British slang "to lift another on one's shoulders to help him break in." As a noun, from 1936.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for heist



A robbery or holdup: Led Zeppelin was the victim of the heist (1930+ Underworld)

  1. To steal; stick up; rob (1931+ Underworld)
  2. To highjack (1920+ Underworld)
Related Terms

short heist

[fr an early and dialectal pronunciation of hoist; in an 1883 source hoist is defined as ''to rob houses by climbing in a window,'' because one thief climbs or hoists himself up over another]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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