Definition of monte in English:



  • 1

    • ‘Before seeing the monte, the bidder discards up to four unwanted cards face down.’
  • 2A Spanish game of chance, played with forty-five cards.

    • ‘In truth, he was a card cheat of remarkable dexterity who routinely cleaned out the sophisticates in games of three-card monte.’
    • ‘Part of his plan is to develop the same skills at three-card monte that Lincoln, who has given up cards, used to have.’
    • ‘This game is often called three-card monte in America, a name taken from monte, a Spanish game using 45 playing cards, which was once common in Mexico and California.’
    • ‘On the sidewalk he sees a man playing three-card monte.’


Early 19th century: Spanish, literally ‘mountain’, also ‘heap of cards left after dealing’ (from an earlier game of chance played with forty-five cards).