Why was clemency trending last week?


[ploi] /plɔɪ/
a maneuver or stratagem, as in conversation, to gain the advantage.
verb (used with object)
Military Archaic. to move (troops) from a line into a column.
Compare deploy.
verb (used without object)
Military Archaic. to move from a line into a column.
Origin of ploy
1475-85; earlier ploye to bend < Middle French ployer (French plier) < Latin plicāre to fold, ply2; see deploy
Related forms
counterploy, noun
1. tactic, ruse, subterfuge, wile, gambit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for ploy
  • But challenging pre-game rhetoric was a ploy that had seemed unnecessary.
  • It's another ploy to trick people into moving stolen merchandise out of the country.
  • But occasionally this ploy is appropriate and effective.
  • Corporate social responsibility today though is a mere marketing ploy to play to the consumer.
  • It could be probably a ploy to attract the attention of the public.
  • The fragile legs detach easily, probably as an escape ploy against attackers.
  • Though a prevalent ploy in nature, the fake-eye look isn't foolproof.
  • Some see its release as a ploy to put an end to court cases against former military officers.
  • Revealing a hidden fact late in a campaign is a common ploy to damage an opponent beyond recovery before an election.
  • Her opponents considered it a ploy to deflect criticism of her administration.
British Dictionary definitions for ploy


a manoeuvre or tactic in a game, conversation, etc; stratagem; gambit
any business, job, hobby, etc, with which one is occupied: angling is his latest ploy
(mainly Brit) a frolic, escapade, or practical joke
Word Origin
C18: originally Scot and northern English, perhaps from obsolete n sense of employ meaning an occupation
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for ploy

1722, "anything with which one amuses oneself," Scottish and northern England dialect, possibly a shortened form of employ or deploy. Popularized in the sense "move or gambit made to gain advantage" by British humorist Stephen Potter (1900-1969).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for ploy



A device or stratagem; a move, esp one designed to disconcert an opponent while keeping one's position; a shrewd maneuver

[1722+; apparently fr Scots dialect; popularized by the late British humorist Stephen Potter]

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

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for ploy

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for ploy

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with ploy

Nearby words for ploy