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[trey-ter] /ˈtreɪ tər/
a person who betrays another, a cause, or any trust.
a person who commits treason by betraying his or her country.
Origin of traitor
1175-1225; Middle English < Old French < Latin trāditōr-, stem of trāditor betrayer. See traditor
Related forms
traitorship, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for traitor
  • He who does not fully speak the truth is a traitor to it.
  • If he is a traitor he can not so quickly deliver his army to the enemy.
  • He has been branded a traitor by his former comrades.
  • Patriotism will only make sense when there's a traitor.
  • If not an actual traitor, he is certainly somebody worth investigating to see who is paying him off.
British Dictionary definitions for traitor


a person who is guilty of treason or treachery, in betraying friends, country, a cause or trust, etc
Derived Forms
traitorous, adjective
traitorously, adverb
traitorship, noun
traitress, noun:feminine
Word Origin
C13: from Old French traitour, from Latin trāditortraditor
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for traitor

c.1200, from Old French traitor (11c.), from Latin traditorem (nominative traditor) "betrayer," literally "one who delivers," from stem of tradere "deliver, surrender" (see tradition). Originally usually with a suggestion of Judas Iscariot.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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