- Chess. an opening in which a player seeks to obtain some advantage by sacrificing a pawn or piece.
- any maneuver by which one seeks to gain an advantage.
- a remark made to open or redirect a conversation.
Origin of gambit
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for gambit
This gambit means Aereo is avoiding paying anything to broadcasters or the middlemen it is replacing.What the Aereo Decision Means for You
June 25, 2014
How did you arrive at him as your Gambit, and why did you decide to move away from Taylor Kitsch?
One gambit is to require photo identification, a reasonable-sounding provision that 34 states have now adopted.The ID Whose Time Has Come
April 16, 2014
But it is the backbone of the permanent warfare-state bureaucracy that keeps the gambit going.The End of U.S. Imperium—Finally!
September 3, 2013
In more general terms, though, the chained CPI gambit is not playing out so well for Obama, either.A Republican Opera Buffa
April 12, 2013
The Widow's gambit was played, and she had not won the game.Elsie Venner
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
White opens with Queen's pawn to Qu 3, and Black recognizes the gambit.Proclaim Liberty!
This is one of the oldest systems of defence against the Queen's Gambit.Chess Fundamentals
Jos Ral Capablanca
The idea was more than just a gambit to attract Ashe's attention, it was true!Key Out of Time
Andre Alice Norton
It was a little conversational flourish, a gambit in the polite game.Crome Yellow
- chess an opening move in which a chessman, usually a pawn, is sacrificed to secure an advantageous position
- an opening comment, manoeuvre, etc, intended to secure an advantage or promote a point of view
Word Origin and History for gambit
"chess opening in which a pawn is risked for advantage later," 1650s, gambett, from Italian gambetto, literally "a tripping up" (as a trick in wrestling), from gamba "leg," from Late Latin gamba (see gambol). Applied to chess openings in Spanish in 1561 by Ruy Lopez, who traced it to the Italian word, but the form in Spanish generally was gambito, which led to French gambit, which has influenced the English spelling of the word. Broader sense of "opening move meant to gain advantage" in English is recorded from 1855.