Try Our Apps


Gobble up these 8 terms for eating


[tin-hawrn] /ˈtɪnˌhɔrn/ Slang.
someone, especially a gambler, who pretends to be important but actually has little money, influence, or skill.
cheap and insignificant; small-time:
a tinhorn racket.
Origin of tinhorn
1880-85, Americanism; tin + horn Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for tinhorn
Historical Examples
  • On the last turn Smith drew another three and tinhorn another queen.

    'Me-Smith' Caroline Lockhart
  • Was tinhorn bluffing or did he have another queen in the “hole”?

    'Me-Smith' Caroline Lockhart
  • But there was one person his story did involve, and that was Spiker, the tinhorn, tenderfoot sport of Noches.

    Mavericks William MacLeod Raine
  • You wasn't laid out with a crack on the nut, old tinhorn; tell us how it happened.'

    In the Track of the Trades Lewis R. Freeman
  • tinhorn” in particular was disturbed because of their nearness.

    The Fighting Shepherdess
    Caroline Lockhart
  • That makes them mad and the tinhorn bunch keep stirring up trouble.

    Corporal Cameron Ralph Connor
  • The next turn showed up a queen for tinhorn and a three-spot for Smith.

    'Me-Smith' Caroline Lockhart
  • Every tinhorn sport has his bundle, you know; but it's only your real gent that can flash a check book.

    Shorty McCabe Sewell Ford
  • Make it Masterson, an hell make you an every other tinhorn hard to find.

    The Sunset Trail Alfred Henry Lewis
  • When tinhorn dealt him another jack he bought more chips and backed his pair, for tinhorn, as yet, had none in sight.

    'Me-Smith' Caroline Lockhart
British Dictionary definitions for tinhorn


a cheap pretentious person, esp a gambler with extravagant claims
cheap and showy
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 tinhorn

"petty but flashy," 1857, from tin + horn (n.); originally of low-class gamblers, from the tin cans they used for shaking dice.

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

tin fish

noun phrase

A torpedo (1925+ Navy)

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

Word Value for tinhorn

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for tinhorn