Definition of cheat in US English:

cheat

verb

  • 1no object Act dishonestly or unfairly in order to gain an advantage, especially in a game or examination.

    ‘she always cheats at cards’
    • ‘I am aware in New South Wales of many individuals who have been denied practice because they have either cheated on exams, or have committed some act of dishonesty.’
    • ‘That is why when cheating occurs, it is often done through the subtle hinting from city or county leaders.’
    • ‘Ford, playing a low-life hustler who cheats at cards and dice, has a soft, dark, sensuous look, sensitive rather than intelligent.’
    • ‘He says, any way you cut it, I mean anything you ingest in your body that gives you an unfair, competitive edge is cheating.’
    • ‘But mostly, it is an attempt to cheat and gain effects by means other than by science.’
    • ‘Administrators may be able to overcome many bad decisions but never dishonesty, cheating or lying.’
    • ‘At present it is a cheat's charter in which those doing the policing are those who gain most from cheating.’
    • ‘So you had these excesses of deception and shenanigans and cheating.’
    • ‘The athlete cheats and through his dishonesty he wins a gold medal and earns a considerable amount of money.’
    • ‘Self-interest is fine, but lying and cheating undermine the capitalism process.’
    • ‘Call it what you like - cheating, gaining an edge, professionalism - the world of football would be far less interesting without this kind of controversy to keep us all engaged.’
    • ‘Will they lie, cheat and steal to gain political power?’
    • ‘When the other side is dishonest, lying, or cheating or when a problem is impossible to resolve, no amount of negotiation will do you any good.’
    • ‘Lying, cheating, deception and duplicity only matter when you lose, for the winners rewrite history.’
    • ‘And as long as the financial rewards for success are so lucrative there will always be an incentive to cheat in order to gain any advantage.’
    • ‘I cheated on his trust and took advantage of his stoical nature.’
    • ‘It's essentially telling them, either the state is over its head, or it simply is cheating and being dishonest.’
    • ‘People would think twice about cheating if the penalty were imprisonment or a hefty fine.’
    • ‘He has been painted by the Western press as a drunk, a psychotic, an unreconstructed Stalinist, and a guy who cheats at golf.’
    • ‘No matter what the outcome, cheating hurts the cause of school improvement.’
    1. 1.1with object Deceive or trick.
      ‘he had cheated her out of everything she had’
      • ‘Last year, Madrid police broke up a fraud ring that cheated hundreds of victims out of $35m through sweepstakes.’
      • ‘He pleaded guilty to cheating the public revenue with intent to defraud over a period of almost six years between August 1997 and March 2003.’
      • ‘Counterfeiting and piracy cheats consumers, retailers, manufacturers and the Exchequer, and often funds criminal activity.’
      • ‘The private company involved was found to have been cheating consumers by being dishonest in the way it charged for its service.’
      • ‘Credit card fraud costs Irish banks more than €10m each year, while last year fraudsters cheated Britons out of €600m.’
      • ‘As a result, English-speakers say that to defraud, swindle, or cheat someone is to ‘gyp’ them.’
      • ‘Don't lump them in with the drug dealers and burglars deliberately cheating the state.’
      • ‘We both felt cheated having been convinced we deserved more.’
      • ‘Would you cover your face after being cheated or swindled?’
      • ‘I'm sure I'm not the only one this weekend who feels a little duped, if not cheated, over a failed attempt to buy further tickets for the World Cup in Germany this summer.’
      • ‘I hope nobody feels too cheated that I didn't manage to follow through.’
      • ‘A Southend con-man who cheated social security of more than £50,000 in benefits has failed in an Appeal Court bid to have his two-year jail term cut.’
      • ‘In his role as Consumer Affairs minister, Mr Sutcliffe has to keep up to date with the ever-more ingenious methods criminals employ to cheat and defraud us.’
      • ‘He cheated and ironically, he also felt cheated.’
      • ‘I've met people who have foolishly spent beyond their means and I've also met a good number of people who have been cheated or swindled out of sizeable amounts.’
      • ‘I've been cheated, conned, hood winked and taken for a ride.’
      • ‘The policies which were put in place left the work force feeling cheated since they had expected to gain control of industry, and there were strikes and unrest in the country.’
      • ‘The practice becomes illegal when done surreptitiously to cheat the consumer or defraud the taxman.’
      • ‘It is blatant deception and will have left a lot of people feeling cheated and angry.’
      • ‘Let's make the case for the private sector, which is being unfairly treated / cheated.’
      swindle, defraud, deceive, trick, dupe, hoodwink, double-cross, gull
      deprive of, deny, prevent from gaining, preclude from gaining
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2informal Be sexually unfaithful.
      ‘I wish someone had told me my partner was cheating on me’
      • ‘I don't think I can resist cheating on my boyfriend.’
      • ‘I was going out with this one guy, Alex, and I found out he was cheating on me so I broke up with him over the phone.’
      • ‘He decided to speed up the breakup by cheating on me.’
      • ‘I didn't cheat on anyone, or date someone else to gain what I wanted.’
      • ‘He keeps cheating on her and she knows it, but she never leaves him.’
      • ‘Sometimes I even feel like I'm cheating on Mike by being in love with Ryan.’
      • ‘Of course, one of the women was also cheating on her lover with a man, which so infuriated her lover that it resulted in one woman killing the other in a jealous rage.’
      • ‘Well, I found out his girlfriend's e-mail address, and under a false name I told her that her boyfriend had been cheating on her with me and a bunch of other girls.’
      • ‘I asked her if she was seeing someone else, and she denied it at first, but finally admitted to cheating on me.’
      • ‘Next week, Shandi cheats on her boyfriend again, this time with an Italian dude, and then there is more yelling and crying on the phone with said cheated-on boyfriend.’
      • ‘Last year I discovered that my wife of more than a dozen years had been cheating on me with two different men: one for more than five years, the other for a little over a year.’
      • ‘I loved my husband very much, and I feel I would be cheating on him or tarnishing his memory for his boys if I started dating this soon.’
      • ‘The bottom line is that on some level, I feel like I'm cheating on my husband, but obviously, there's nothing sexual between my friend and me.’
      • ‘I had broken up with him about a year before that because he had been cheating on me for nearly a year.’
      • ‘He'd been cheating on me with some girl from the Internet as a way of avoiding the fact that we weren't getting along as well as we used to.’
      • ‘Another guy I know was cheating on his wife, but ultimately broke off the affair and went back to her.’
      • ‘You were cheating on her up until two months ago?’
      • ‘I don't trust my boyfriend, I don't believe a word he says, and I honestly believe he is cheating on me.’
      • ‘I know my husband is not cheating on me, but I feel as though he wishes he were still running around.’
      • ‘The most horrible part of it was, she was cheating on me and we were living together.’
      commit adultery, be unfaithful, stray, be untrue, be inconstant, be false
      View synonyms
  • 2with object Avoid (something undesirable) by luck or skill.

    ‘she cheated death in a spectacular crash’
    • ‘The 86-year-old had already cheated death several times.’
    • ‘A man who cheated death in a blaze at his home today praised firefighters to whom he said he ‘owed his life’.’
    • ‘A courageous schoolgirl has cheated death, not once but twice.’
    • ‘A miracle baby who cheated death after being born four months early is today a ‘happy and healthy’ boy who has just celebrated his first birthday.’
    • ‘Nothing makes you feel more alive than thinking you've just cheated death.’
    • ‘But a Yorkshire honeymoon couple yesterday told how they cheated death - because they were too tired to go out after spending the day sightseeing.’
    • ‘Twice in the past two years Burns had cheated death.’
    • ‘Two men cheated death when they were rescued from freezing floodwaters after their dinghy capsized near Selby.’
    • ‘A family of five cheated death when a blaze ripped through their loft on Thursday night.’
    • ‘A family of five today told how they cheated death when a gas blast ripped through their York home on Christmas Day.’
    • ‘A couple have told how they cheated death when a hurricane struck their hotel during a holiday from hell.’
    • ‘In February last year when construction work had not long been underway, two builders cheated death when a concrete stairwell collapsed beneath them.’
    • ‘A second Sutton family also cheated death in the natural disaster.’
    • ‘A mother and her 13-month old baby cheated death by moments thanks to a dramatic rescue from their burning home in Kendal.’
    • ‘A speeding driver who cheated death in a horrific collision has made a desperate plea for Swindon motorists to slow down.’
    • ‘A terrifying cliff plunge left a group of friends counting their blessings when they cheated death during a drive in Kerry.’
    • ‘A climber who cheated death near the summit of Everest vows to return to the world's highest peak to finish the conquest.’
    • ‘A grandfather who cheated death after suffering horrific burns on holiday has been dubbed a ‘walking miracle’.’
    • ‘At home, the reward of having cheated death is tempered by new concerns.’
    • ‘A motorist who cheated death when his car plunged into icy water has been told to pay a £70 bill for polluting a Yorkshire river.’
    avoid, escape, evade, elude, steer clear of, dodge, duck, miss, sidestep, bypass, skirt, shun, eschew
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    1. 2.1archaic Help (time) pass.
      ‘the tuneless rhyme with which the warder cheats the time’

noun

  • 1A person who behaves dishonestly in order to gain an advantage.

    ‘a liar and a cheat’
    • ‘The courteous, honest, plain dealing man in the market will always endure over the cheat and rogue or fraudster.’
    • ‘However, if it leads to increased revenue to be spent on road improvements, motorists can only benefit in the end - and honest motorists will have the satisfaction of knowing they are no longer subsidising as many cheats.’
    • ‘He's a liar and a cheat, and merely being ‘quite reluctant’ to rely on him is far too weak a response.’
    • ‘With time, he becomes more and more impressed with the young woman - at the same time he discovers her artist husband is a liar and a cheat.’
    • ‘They are all cheats, people say, all swindlers.’
    • ‘Now testing is the responsibility of the US Anti-Doping Agency, a no-holds-barred body that hunts drugs cheats relentlessly and ruthlessly.’
    • ‘These people are cheats, fraudsters, charlatans and hoaxers.’
    • ‘Last year the district council prosecuted three benefit cheats, resulting in a total award of £9,000, with a further £7,000 in administrative penalties.’
    • ‘A benefits cheat who dishonestly claimed £22,000 while living a life of luxury said today that no amount of money could buy happiness.’
    • ‘Chrissie paints a picture of Den as a liar and a cheat.’
    • ‘Housing benefit cheats on the Yorkshire coast face being pursued by debt collectors and the courts in a new purge on fraud which has already reduced the money owed to hard-pressed local chargepayers by nearly two-thirds.’
    • ‘I do it in love, and charity, and compassion to your soul: I believe it to be a public duty to warn people against cheats, quacks, and impostors.’
    • ‘Athletes who abide by the rules are up against cheats with a distinct advantage.’
    • ‘The referee said I was a liar and a cheat, but my foot was injured at that time.’
    • ‘An honest person will have friends who value honesty, and a dishonest one will have cheats as friends.’
    • ‘All of the medical expertise should be focused on getting tests that are sharp enough to catch even the most expert of cheats.’
    • ‘He is a proven liar, a cheat and a chancer, a man so arrogant that he thought he was above the law.’
    • ‘The man who closed the net on drug cheats at the Olympics warns that even tougher action to clean up sport is still to come’
    • ‘As the trial unfolded, the press split between those who thought her a liar and a cheat, but believed the jury would acquit, and the loyalists.’
    • ‘The blood tests which snared three drugs cheats at last month's Winter Olympics could be missing from the anti-doping programme throughout Britain this year, including the Commonwealth Games.’
    swindler, cheater, fraudster, trickster, confidence trickster, deceiver, hoaxer, hoodwinker, double-dealer, double-crosser, sham, fraud, fake, crook, rogue, charlatan, quack, mountebank, racketeer
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 An act of cheating; a fraud or deception.
      • ‘The number of fare cheats has now been reduced to about 1,500 a day.’
      • ‘It's a bit of a cheat pretending that a town with a population of eleven thousand is a village, but in comparison to neighbouring Watford the place is positively rural.’
      • ‘Only at the end, when the director employs a cheat to offer one final plot twist, do things start to unravel.’
      • ‘Of course we all want to be able to detect the lie, the cheat, the swindle, the manipulation.’
      • ‘It is a sales gimmick, a cheat, a swindle, a scam.’
      • ‘Some casinos subscribe to the agency, which protects casinos from cheats and scams.’
      • ‘And if the climactic surprise feels like a magician's cheat, at least we've been hoodwinked by a master.’
      • ‘Corny story cheats become believable, and meaningful, because the whole story works this way.’
      • ‘Has it been proved to you that there was a cheat on the Revenue, a conspiracy?’
      • ‘The film has three slackers riding their way through college on scams, cheats and underhanded stunts.’
      • ‘The label could be a fake, a counterfeit, a cheat.’
      swindle, fraud, deception, deceit, hoax, sham, trick, ruse, dodge, stratagem, blind, wile, trojan horse
      View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: shortening of escheat (the original sense).

Pronunciation

cheat

/CHēt//tʃit/