Definition of thimblerig in English:

thimblerig

Line breaks: thimble|rig
Pronunciation: /ˈθɪmb(ə)lrɪɡ
 
/

noun

[mass noun]
A game involving sleight of hand, in which three inverted thimbles or cups are moved about, contestants having to spot which is the one with a pea or other object underneath.
More example sentences
  • Select your character and find it hidden beneath one of the three containers in the game of thimblerig.
  • Find the Lady is, except for the props used, essentially the same as the probably centuries-older shell game or thimblerig.
  • There was Dr. Bennett, a riverboat gambler who invented thimblerig and could still outwit the best of them at 70.

Origin

early 19th century: from thimble + rig2 in the sense 'trick, dodge'.

Derivatives

thimblerigger

noun
More example sentences
  • The sort of stuff that thimbleriggers and sleight-of-hand artists peddled off the backs of wagons to gawping farmhands and country bumpkins back in the 19th century.
  • But thimbleriggers are masters of sleight of hand and can move and manipulate the seed unfairly - so the guileless player doesn't stand a chance of winning.
  • You'll find thimbleriggers frequently, but don't be misled to play the three shells game, you'll lose!

Definition of thimblerig in:

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Pronunciation: ˈretrəˌfleks
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