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sharper

[shahr-per] /ˈʃɑr pər/
noun
1.
a shrewd swindler.
2.
a professional gambler.
Also, sharpie.
Origin
1560-1570
1560-70; sharp + -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for sharpers

sharper

/ˈʃɑːpə/
noun
1.
a person who cheats or swindles; fraud
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 sharpers

sharper

n.

1560s, "one who makes sharp," agent noun from obsolete verb sharp "to make sharp" (see sharp (adj.)). Meaning "swindler" is from 1680s, probably a variant of sharker (see shark (n.)). Shortened form sharpie is from 1942, also probably involving the "sharply dressed" sense of the adjective.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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