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code word

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noun
  1. code name.
  2. a euphemistic or politically acceptable catchword or phrase used instead of a blunter or less acceptable term: The official report said the diplomats had a “frank and serious discussion”—code words for “angry argument.”

Origin of code word

First recorded in 1880–85
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for code word

Historical Examples

  • And it implied an urgency in the use of the code-word Mother.

    Way of a Rebel

    Walter M. Miller

  • Only he, apparently saw the minute widening of the admiral's eyes at that code-word.

    Man of Many Minds

    E. Everett Evans

  • Snap had taken the code-word sheet, that time we sealed the purser in the cage.